Art History Major, B.A.

Department of Art

http://art.unc.edu

101 Hanes Art Center, CB# 3405

(919) 962-2015

Eduardo Douglas, Director of Undergraduate Studies (Art History)

eduardod@email.unc.edu

Carol Magee, Chair

cmagee@email.unc.edu

Yulianna Aparicio, Student Services

yulipo@email.unc.edu

The undergraduate program in art history is directed toward two main educational goals:

  1. to provide students with an excellent liberal arts foundation through an understanding of the historical and global significance, cultural diversity, and intellectual richness of human artistic traditions from prehistoric times to the present; and
  2. to provide these students with the intellectual tools needed to investigate the complex roles played by the arts in a variety of social contexts.

Skills in visual analysis, historical research, critical reading, analytical and descriptive writing, and oral communication are developed throughout the course of the study. The practice of art history is interdisciplinary, dynamically engaged with many fields in the humanities and social sciences, as well as with the University’s diverse area studies programs and the Ackland Art Museum. The art history major equips students with skills, knowledge, and values to negotiate rapidly changing, richly diverse, and increasingly interconnected local, national, and worldwide communities.

Department Programs

Majors

Minors

Graduate Programs

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the art history program, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the works of art, artists, viewers, and patrons in a variety of cultures and societies; and the visual arts in the context of the past and present societies that produced them
  • Recognize that visual forms and symbols are historically and culturally contingent, and that interpretation requires a knowledge of the visual language specific to the work of art, as a result of studying the arts in a variety of cultures and historical moments
  • Pose an art historical question, pursue that question through research in original and secondary sources, evaluate evidence, and create an argument in response to that evidence
  • Demonstrate deep content area knowledge by explaining and discussing intelligently major issues related to that field

Requirements

In addition to the program requirements listed below, students must

  • attain a final cumulative GPA of at least 2.0
  • complete a minimum of 45 academic credit hours earned from UNC–Chapel Hill courses
  • take at least half of their major course requirements (courses and credit hours) at UNC–Chapel Hill
  • earn a minimum of 18 hours of C or better in the major core requirements (some majors require 21 hours).

For more information, please consult the degree requirements section of the catalog.

Core Requirements
Two art history foundation courses from ARTH 100 to ARTH 1996
Eight ARTH courses above 199, apportioned in the following way 124
At least one course from three of four geographic areas (see course lists below)
At least one course from each of the three chronological areas (see course lists below)
At least three courses must be numbered above 399
ARTH 391Undergraduate Research Seminar 23
One studio art course (ARTS)3
Total Hours36
1

A first-year seminar taught by an art history faculty member may be substituted for one art history course numbered above 199.

2

Offered with three chronological topic areas. It is strongly recommended that students take this seminar no later than the spring of their junior year.

Distribution Course Lists

The Americas (AA)

1300–1800 (II)
Women in the Visual Arts I
Art and Architecture of Viceregal Latin America
Art of the Aztec Empire
1800–Present (III)
First-Year Seminar: Art and the Body
First-Year Seminar: African American Art of the Carolinas
Latin American Modernisms
Art of Exchange and Exploration: Early America and the Globe
Art Since 1960
African American Art Survey
19th-Century American Art
Fashioning Identities
Modern Architecture
Pop Art and Its Legacy
20th-Century African American Art
The Mexican Mural Renaissance, 1921-1945
Brazilian Modernism
Art of the Harlem Renaissance
Introduction to Museum Studies
Imagining Otherness in Visual Culture in the Americas
No Chronological Classification
Art of Exchange and Exploration: Early America and the Globe

Europe and the Mediterranean (EM)

Prehistoric–1300 (I)
First-Year Seminar: Cathedrals, Abbeys, Castles: Gothic Art and Architecture (c. 1130-1450)
First-Year Seminar: Celts--Druid Culture
Medieval Art in Western Europe
Art and Interchange in Medieval Iberia
Cathedrals, Abbeys, Castles: Gothic Art and Architecture, ca.1130-1500
Arts of the Islamic Mediterranean
1300–1800 (II)
First-Year Seminar: Art, Gender, and Power in Early Modern Europe H
Early Renaissance Art in Italy
High Renaissance Art in Italy
Northern European Art: Van Eyck to Bruegel
European Baroque Art
Art and the History of Museums, 1750-2000
The Renaissance Portrait
European Art and Sexuality
The City as Monument H
1800–Present (III)
First-Year Seminar: Art, War, and Revolution H
Modernism I: Realism, Impressionism, Post-Impressionism
Modernism II: 1905-1960
Early Modern and Modern Decorative Arts
Art, Politics, and Society in France, 1850-1914
Monuments and Memory
No Chronological Classification
Medieval Iconography H
The Art of Dying Well: Death and Commemoration in the Middle Ages and Early Modern Times
Late Medieval Art
H

Honors version available. An honors course fulfills the same requirements as the nonhonors version of that course. Enrollment and GPA restrictions may apply.

Asian and the Middle East (AM)

Prehistoric–1300 (I)
First-Year Seminar: Islamic Art and Science
Art in the Age of the Caliphs
Islamic Architecture and the Environment
Islamic Urbanism

Africa (AF)

1800–Present (III)
African Art and Culture
Art, Culture, and Power in Africa
Arts of Southern Africa
Clothing and Textiles in Africa
Arts of West Africa
Art of African Independence
Africa and Masks
Africa in the American Imagination H
Contemporary African Art
Urban Africa and Global Mobility
H

Honors version available. An honors course fulfills the same requirements as the nonhonors version of that course. Enrollment and GPA restrictions may apply.

Other

1800–Present (III)
Art and Money

Honors in Art History

The honors program is open to students with a 3.3 grade point average who have demonstrated overall excellence in the discipline. Honors are generally pursued in the senior year. Students enroll in the honors courses (ARTH 691H in the fall; ARTH 692H in the spring) through the student services assistant in the Department of Art office. This should be done after consultation with the faculty honors advisor and department honors advisor. For more information, see the honors program description elsewhere in this catalog and the departmental honors announcement. Honors work will allow a student to graduate with honors or with highest honors.

Special Opportunities in Art

Independent Study

Students may pursue independent study coursework with individual faculty members. Such work may be undertaken only with the permission of the sponsoring faculty member. Students should consult individual faculty members prior to registration to secure permission. A proposal and a contract must be approved by the director of undergraduate studies before students may enroll. The independent study syllabus and contract are available on the art majors’ Sakai site. Since faculty members are limited to supervising only two independent study students each semester, students are strongly advised to contact the faculty member with whom they wish to work early in the registration period for the upcoming semester.

Independent study work requires a minimum of three hours per week per credit hour. For example, a typical three-credit-hour class would require at least nine hours of work per week. Once the semester begins, students must meet with the faculty member initially to confirm goals, review expectations, and establish semester deadlines. Thereafter, students must meet regularly to review work in progress, with a suggested biweekly frequency. Total time spent in direct interaction with the faculty member for the semester must average 45 minutes per week. This may be in the form of face-to-face meetings, blog or e-mail exchanges, or group critiques with other independent study students and their advisors.

Departmental Involvement

Students have opportunities to see and interact with professional artists and their work through exhibitions in the Allcott Galleries, installations of sculptural works in the Alumni Sculpture Garden, artist-in-residence programs, the Visiting Artist Professional Program, and the Hanes Visiting Artist Lecture Series.

There are several undergraduate student organizations serving the visual arts at Carolina. The Undergraduate Art Association (UAA) is a campuswide social club that supports and develops undergraduate visual artists at Carolina — regardless of their enrollment in art classes — and strengthens the impact of visual art in the University community. The Studio Art Majors Association (SAMA) is aimed specifically at developing community and professional opportunities that augment the experience for studio art majors and minors. ArtHeels is a service-based organization that is passionate about bringing arts (visual, performing, and literary) to the healthcare setting. The Art History Liaisons is the undergraduate art history group. Kappa Pi is the art majors honors society which includes both studio and art history majors. These groups serve as an important link between the majors and the department’s administration. The department utilizes these organizations to facilitate communication about matters of interest, including participation in departmental initiatives or other extracurricular opportunities.

Internships

Art majors are encouraged to pursue internships at local, regional, or national arts institutions or businesses. Students have worked in many art career contexts including museums and galleries, arts programming, and local businesses specializing in art-related production (photo studios, printmaking studios, illustration, design firms, and publishing). The art majors' Sakai site has useful information, including the ARTS 493 syllabus and contract and a partial listing of organizations that have worked with our students in the past. If you would like to discuss specific ideas about a possible internship, speak to any studio art faculty member or the director of undergraduate studies. All internships taken for UNC credit are subject to governmental guidelines, and students must have internships preapproved and under contract before enrolling for ARTS 493

Study Abroad

Students are encouraged to pursue study abroad opportunities. While there are many opportunities to study art abroad, the Department of Art maintains a special affiliation with the Studio Art Centers International (SACI) and the Lorenzo di Medici — both in Florence, Italy — and the Glasgow School of Art in Scotland. Students should discuss their study abroad plans with the undergraduate advisor in studio art to obtain prior approval for courses taken abroad. Basically, courses that have an equivalent in the UNC–Chapel Hill curriculum usually are approved. Courses that fall outside the UNC–Chapel Hill curriculum must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. No guarantee exists that a course will transfer for credit unless preapproved. Contact the Study Abroad Office to discuss the procedures for approval.

Undergraduate Awards

Undergraduate Scholarship Awards in Studio Art

The studio program awards more than $24,000 annually to students. A competition each November allows studio art majors to submit up to four works to be considered for the following scholarships:

  • The Alexander Julian Prize (one award to our best student)
  • The Sharpe Scholarships (multiple awards for students receiving financial aid)
  • George Kachergis Studio Art Scholarships (multiple awards chosen by a student-designated committee)
  • The Anderson Award
  • The Penland School of Craft Scholarships (two awards cover expenses for a summer course at the Penland School of Craft)
  • A design honorarium to develop proposals for the Alumni Sculpture Garden (see below).

Individual awards range from a minimum of $500 to $3,000.

Alumni Sculpture Garden Commission

The Department of Art annually commissions new works for the Alumni Sculpture Garden. Students wishing to be considered for the commission start by applying for one of three Sculpture Garden design honorariums during the Undergraduate Studio Art Awards Competition. Students selected during the competition are paid an honorarium to develop a design proposal. These proposals are evaluated and approved by a faculty-designated panel. Selected finalists receive a commission to realize the work. Most projects are sculptural but can be experimental, temporary performative works, projections, or other projects that utilize the Alumni Sculpture Garden spaces around the Hanes Art Center.

Undergraduate Research

Opportunities for undergraduate research in the Department of Art exist in several forms. Detailed descriptions and application guidelines are available on the art majors’ Sakai site and from the department's student services manager.

Allcott Travel Fellowships support two summer research projects in studio art and/or art history.

The Pearman Fund supports special projects in both art history and studio art. Competitions for art history research funds are held in the fall and the spring. Studio art students may request funds for special projects by submitting a proposal to the director of undergraduate studies in studio art. Awards are generally $500 or less.

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) are administered through the UNC Office for Undergraduate Research. These $3,000 awards support undergraduate research projects over the summer. UNC's broad definition of research includes creative practices and the James Boyd Gadson SURFs are specifically designated for studio art. SURF applications from studio art majors are automatically considered for these Gadson Fellowships. This fund typically supports at least two awards. Application deadlines (usually in February) are set by the Office for Undergraduate Research. Students interested in pursuing summer research should contact possible faculty sponsors toward the end of the fall semester.

The Jacquelyn Friedman and Marvin Saltzman Fund in Art provides supplemental monies for painting supplies for students who for economic reasons may be hindered from working to their full potential. Any undergraduate student with need, regardless of major, enrolled in a Department of Art painting class during the fall and/or spring semesters is eligible. Students should see their course instructor for further information.