Course Syllabus for "ARTH101A: Art Appreciation and Techniques".

Please note: Our faculty members have indicated that several important changes need to be made in order to improve the course and your experience as a student. In 2013, we will be re-releasing this course under the simplified title: ARTH101: Art Appreciation and Techniques. Until then, you are welcome to work through this course at your own leisure; there’s still a lot to learn here! After that date, you will still be able to access this version of the course as an “archived” course, but we will no longer be maintaining it. Please let us know if you have any questions or suggestions at http://www.saylor.org/feedback The goal of this course is to encourage you to develop an interest in and appreciation for art in all its variety and learn how to express this appreciation in an informed and critical way.  The first and shortest unit asks: “What is art?” and works toward an understanding of its place and purposes in our lives and world.  The second unit will present you with some vocabulary commonly used to describe and analyze art and introduce you to what is often referred to as the “language of art”: the elements of design (such as line or color) and the principles of design that govern the way those elements come together in an artwork.  In the third and fourth units of the course, we will explore a host of different media (two-dimensional as well as three-dimensional) and take a look at the specific techniques associated with each of them.  The last two units of this course survey the development of art from the time of cave paintings to the present.  We will discuss the determining impact cultural context has on art. Note: Throughout this course, we will use one primary textbook: Professor Charlotte Jirousek's "Art, Design, and Visual Thinking."  You may want to bookmark this webpage now for ease of use.  This resource is an online textbook that was designed to support a course Professor Jirousek teaches at Cornell University.  The link to the textbook is http://char.txa.cornell.edu/.  The table of contents of the textbook, which is the component of the site we will be using, is on the left side of the webpage.  The passages assigned as readings can be accessed by scrolling down in the table of contents.  Note that the author frequently embeds links to other sites in his entries; as you work through the assigned readings, please be sure to visit each of the links she includes. Note that this course is an alternative to ARTH101B, and that you may choose to take either ARTH101A or ARTH101B in order to learn the basics of Art Appreciation and Techniques.  These courses cover the same material, but in a slightly different way.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

Course Requirements

In order to take this course, you must:

√    Have access to a computer.

√    Have continuous broadband internet access.

√    Have the ability/permission to install plug-ins or software (e.g. Adobe Reader of Flash).

√    Have the ability to download and save files and documents to a computer.

√    Have the ability to open Microsoft files and documents (.doc, .ppt, .xls, etc.).

√    Be competent in the English language.

√    Have read the Saylor Student Handbook.

Course Information

Welcome to ARTH101.  Below, please find general information on this course and its requirements. 

Course Designer: Elisabeth Miller

Primary Resources: This course requires you to learn from a multiplicity of free online resources.  However, one resource will serve as the main reference and can be considered the course textbook:

The following resource will also be used repeatedly throughout the entirety of the course:

Requirements for Completion: In order to complete this course you will need to work through each unit of the course and pass the Final Exam with a score of 70% or higher.  If you do not pass the exam, you may take it again.  Included within the units are readings, lectures, videos, and assignments or exercises that we have called “guided observations.”  While the “guided observations” are not graded, the Final Exam will test you on the knowledge you acquired completing them.

Time Commitment: This course should take you approximately 55 hours to complete.  The time advisories listed under each unit title will help you organize your calendar.  Since units are unequal in the time investment they require on your part, you may want to take a look at the time advisories for each unit before you begin the course.  

Tips/Suggestions: In addition to reading the material, listening to the lectures, watching the videos, and completing the assignments, you will need to take careful notes and spend time reviewing to be able to assimilate the information you will be tested on in the Final Exam.  The instructional boxes accompanying the links to the course resources will help you focus your study.    

Course Overview

  • 4.4.4 Art Deco  
  • 4.4.5 Frank Lloyd Wright  
  • 4.4.6 De Stijl  
  • 4.4.7 Bauhaus/Modern  
  • 4.4.8 Post-Modern  
  • Unit 5: Art in Time and Place: The Western World  

    The formal and stylistic aspects of artworks are often largely determined by the era and location in which they were created.  In this unit, we will study art through its evolution in time and place in the Western world.  You will develop the tools you need to identify the major formal and stylistic trends punctuating the timeline of Western Art History.  This approach will enable us to see the relationship between works of art and their specific social-historical contexts.  This unit will also reveal a certain continuum that runs through Western Art, from Ancient Greece to modern times.

    Unit 5 Time Advisory

    This unit should take you approximately 17.75 hours to complete.

    ☐    Subunit 5.1: 0.25 hours

    ☐    Subunit 5.2: 3 hours

    ☐    Subunit 5.3: 2 hours

    ☐    Subunit 5.4: 1.5 hours

    ☐    Subunit 5.5: 3 hours

    ☐    Subunit 5.6: 8 hours

    Unit5 Learning Outcomes

    Upon successful completion of this unit, the student will be able to:

    • Identify the important stylistic developments in the History of Western art.
    • Compare and contrast artistic styles from different historical eras and geographies within the Western world.
    • Associate different artistic styles with specific geographies, eras, beliefs, and historical events of the Western world.
    • Associate specific artworks and artists with specific historical and geographical contexts of the Western world.
    • Discuss specific artworks and artists of the Western World.
    • Demonstrate an awareness of the importance of situating artworks within their cultural and historical contexts.
  • 5.1 Earliest Art: Cave Paintings  
  • 5.2 Art of the Ancient Near East and Egypt  
  • 5.2.1 Art of the Ancient Near East  
  • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: “The Akkadian Period (ca. 2350–2150 B.C.)

    Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: “The Akkadian Period (ca. 2350–2150 B.C.) (HTML)

    Instructions: Please read the article for an introduction to the arts of the Akkadian Period of the Near East.

    This reading should take approximately 5 minutes to complete.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Web Media: Smarthistory.org: Dr Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker’s “Victory Stele of Naram-Sin

    Link: Smarthistory.org: Dr Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker’s “Victory Stele of Naram-Sin” (Adobe Flash)
     
    Instructions: Please watch this video that discusses an important example of Akkadian art.

    This video will take approximately 5 minutes to watch.
     
    Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • Reading: The British Museum’s “Babylonians”

    Link: The British Museum’s “Babylonians” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Please read the article, which introduces you to a civilization that rose to domination in Mesopotamia after the Akkadian period.

    This reading should take approximately 5 minutes to complete.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Web Media: Smarthistory.org: Dr Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker’s “Law Code Stele of King Hammurabi”

    Link: Smarthistory.org: Dr Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker’s “Law Code Stele of King Hammurabi” (Adobe Flash)
     
    Instructions: Please watch this video, which discusses an important example of Babylonian art.

    This video will take approximately 3 minutes to watch.
     
    Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • Reading: The British Museum’s “Assyrians”

    Link: The British Museum’s “Assyrians” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Please read the article, which introduces you to the Assyrian civilization that dominated Mesopotamia in the period following Babylonia’s hegemony.  Please also click on the thumbnail image on the side of the text to view it and read about it.

    This reading should take approximately 5 minutes to complete.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: “The Achaemenid Persian Empire (550–330 B.C.)”

    Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: “The Achaemenid Persian Empire (550–330 B.C.)” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Please read the article.  It will introduce you to the arts and culture of Persia.

    This reading should take approximately 10 minutes to complete.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.2.2 The Art of Ancient Egypt  
  • 5.3 Art in Ancient Greece and Rome  
  • 5.3.1 Greece  
  • 5.3.2 Rome  
  • 5.4 Art during the Middle Ages  
  • 5.4.1 Early Christian and Byzantine Art  
  • 5.4.2 Barbarian Art  
  • 5.4.3 Ottonian Art  
  • 5.4.4 Romanesque Art  
  • 5.4.5 Gothic Art  
  • 5.5 Art from the Renaissance to the Nineteenth Century  
  • 5.5.1 The Renaissance  
  • 5.5.2 Mannerism  
  • 5.5.3 Baroque and Rococo Art  
  • 5.5.4 Eighteenth-Century Art  
  • 5.5.5 Romanticism  
  • 5.6 Modern Art  
  • 5.6.1 Change in the Nineteenth Century  
  • 5.6.2 What is Modernism in Art?  
  • 5.6.3 Realism Versus Academic Art  
  • 5.6.4 Impressionism  
  • 5.6.5 Post-Impressionism  
  • 5.6.6 The Early Twentieth Century  
  • 5.6.7 World War II and Beyond  
  • Unit 6: Art in Time and Place: A Few Non-Western Examples  

    While Western Art has traditionally been the object of study for Art Historians in the West, it is becoming more and more evident that a more global approach to the History of Art is of benefit to the discipline.  Accordingly, this unit will introduce you to the non-Western arts of Asia, Africa, and the Americas.

    Unit 6 Time Advisory

    This unit should take you 4 hours to complete.

    ☐    Subunit 6.1: 2 hours

    ☐    Subunit 6.2: 1.25 hours

    ☐    Subunit 6.3: 0.75 hours

    Unit6 Learning Outcomes

    Upon successful completion of this unit, the student will be able to:

    • Compare and contrast certain artistic styles of different historical eras and geographies within the Non-Western world.
    • Associate different artistic styles with specific geographies, eras, beliefs, and historical events of the Non-Western world.
    • Associate specific artworks and artists with specific historical and geographical contexts of the Non-Western world.
    • Demonstrate an awareness of the importance of situating artworks within their cultural and historical contexts.
  • 6.1 Asian Arts  
  • 6.1.1 The Art of India  
  • 6.1.2 The Art of China  
  • 6.1.3 The Art of Japan  
  • 6.2 The Islamic Middle East and Africa  
  • 6.2.1 The Islamic Middle East  
  • 6.2.2 Africa  
  • 6.3 The Americas  
  • 6.3.1 North America  
  • 6.3.2 South and Central America  
  • Unit 7: Final Exam