ARTHIST 115G Global Art Histories

ARTHIST 115G | BE, EDSW, EMHSS, LC | Semester Two 2024 | City Campus | 15 points


Global Art Histories offers a broad survey of art and visual culture spanning from the early modern period to the contemporary.  In different cultures and in different historical periods, art is used variously to express and extend existing power and authority. Yet such images have also been used for revolution and change. In this course students will be introduced to a range of art practices situated within a global context and will consider art works produced in Māori and Pacific cultures alongside European and American, Indian, Middle Eastern and Asian traditions.  Taking a comparative approach, the course provides students with knowledge of the world's most important cultural traditions. It trains students to recognize how power manipulates vision, concepts and materials, and how artists have challenged this power.

The classes are structured within thematic topics, which include the expression and representation of authority and power; the emergence of different perspectives on modernity and different cultural and political explorations of feminism and identity, migrations and diasporas.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Develop the ability to visually analyse artworks, images and examples of visual culture using reliable methods and terms.
  2. Develop and demonstrate a good confidence in comparing and contrasting artworks and examples of visual culture across cultures.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to situate artworks in their social, historical, cultural and economic contexts.
  4. Develop the skills to sustain an argument and logically compose a narrative in essay writing.
  5. Understand the techniques required to find and research quality resources and information in the library and online.
  6. Identify how Maori artists reflected, adapted and challenged new presences and influences, such as Christianity, colonisalism, new materials and ideas in both customary and contemporary contexts.
  7. Understand how Pacific artists explore and translate indigenous knowledge systems and urban experiences into a range of art forms such as tatau, tapa cloth, painting and photography, as well as performance and digital art practices.


Student Feedback

I really like that this Art History course is in a way linked more closely to my programme than the other options for the first–year elective. It helps enrich knowledge of the art world in general. The structure and objectives are very clear.

Provided a broad range of discussion points on multiple levels, enabling a good depth of understanding. As the art history traversed different cultures simultaneously, it showcased both the diversities and similarities of techniques, genre, styles and evolution of art practice.

The lecturers were very knowledgeable and prepared so I found notes I made were very helpful also.

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