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2023-2024 Graduate Bulletin

Graduate Department of

Art History

College of Fine Arts


Chair: Lorenzo Pericolo; Professors: Neuman, Pericolo; Associate Professors: Bearor, Carrasco, Dowell, Jolles, Jones, Leitch, Niell; Assistant Professors: Bick, Killian, Loic; Instructional Support Specialist III: Hudson; Professors Emeriti: Draper, Freiberg, Gerson, Nasgaard, Rose, Weingarden; Courtesy Professors: Berry, de Grummond, Emmerson, Lee, McLane, Pfaff, Pullen

The Department of Art History offers programs leading to the Master of Arts (MA) in the history and criticism of art, Master of Arts (MA) in museum and cultural heritage studies, and the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in the history and criticism of art. The objective is to prepare the student for a professional career either in academic art history or in a related profession, including work in museums and archives, commercial galleries, and publishing. Four distinct programs provide the greatest flexibility in serving students' career goals (see below for specific program descriptions and requirements).

The faculty includes specialists in Islamic art, Pre-Columbian art, Spanish Colonial and Caribbean art, Early Medieval and Byzantine art, Romanesque and Gothic art, Italian and Northern European Renaissance art and architecture, Baroque and 18th-century art and architecture, modern architecture, 19th- and 20th-century art and criticism, American art, contemporary art and critical theory, history of prints and photography, word-image studies, architectural history and cultural landscape studies, and museum studies. Members of the Classics faculty trained in archaeology and art history offer courses in Aegean, Greek, Etruscan, Roman, and Egyptian art.

The Department of Art History is supported by a rich array of resources, including classrooms, seminar rooms, a teaching lab fully equipped for multimedia presentations, and a media center under the direction of a full-time curator. The media center houses a comprehensive collection of digital resources, including a database of more than 45,000 images. Additionally, the School of Art and Design Library includes over 6,500 art-related books. The University library holdings are extensive and include a rare book and facsimile collection. The library supports many electronic resources and an excellent interlibrary loan division. The resources of the Ringling Museum Library as well as those held by other state universities in Florida are also available.

The University Museum of Fine Arts houses several permanent collections and is used for temporary exhibitions. The University administers the Ringling Museum in Sarasota, with its internationally known collection of European and Asian art. Internships are available at each of the Florida State University's museums.

Students have the opportunity to pursue independent research at the Florida State University Study Centers in Florence, London, Panamá, and Valencia. The Florence program is used extensively by students of the history of art for the study of the Italian language and arts and for archival work. The London and Valencia Study Centers offer opportunities for teaching assistantships and for internships at major museums. Department of Art History faculty also teach a specialized program in art history in Paris. Archaeological experience is available at the Etruscan and Roman sites of Cetamura del Chianti and Poggio delle Civitelle at San Venanzo, the University's field school excavations in Italy.

The department sponsors an annual Art History Graduate Symposium for graduate students attending universities nationwide. Students are chosen to present papers during a two-day series of meetings, and these papers may be submitted for publication in Athanor, a journal for graduate students in art history sponsored by the Art History Department and the College of Fine Arts. Each year a distinguished art historian is invited to participate in the symposium and to deliver the keynote address.

Financial Assistance: The department offers teaching fellowships for doctoral students and stipends for MA students. Department, college, and university assistantships are available as well, and are based on one's past record and future potential in the arts professions. Mason Travel Funds and Mason Research and Writing Grants are available at the doctoral level. Students also may qualify for federal and state financial aid programs.


In addition to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in the history and criticism of art, the department offers two Master of Arts degrees: the MA in the History and Criticism of Art and the MA in Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies. Applicants who already hold a MA in art history may apply for admission to the PhD program.

Master of Arts (MA) in the History and Criticism of Art

This degree involves broad exposure to the history of art and is designed to develop research and writing skills that will be useful in a professional career in one of the art historical disciplines. A minimum of thirty-six credit hours are required.

The program requires 36-credit hours: one course in Methods of Art History (ARH 5813); three courses in the student's major field chosen from the following: Medieval (early Christian, Byzantine, Romanesque, and Gothic), Renaissance and Baroque (Southern and Northern Europe), Modern/Contemporary (19th century to the present, American and European), Visual Cultures of the Americas (Pre-Columbian through present, Western Hemisphere); one course from three different areas (for a total of three courses) other than the student's major field; one course in a field outside the western tradition (Asian, Islamic, Latin American, African, Native American art); one elective chosen from courses inside or outside the department, to be determined in consultation with the graduate advisor; reading proficiency in one foreign language (usually French or German); and nine additional semester hours in art history.

A minimum grade of "B–" is necessary for courses to be counted toward fulfillment of these credits.

Master of Arts (MA) in Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies

This degree offers theoretical and practical training in the investigation and management of cultural heritage. It is aimed at both those who wish to study museum practices and cultural heritage as an academic subject and those who wish to obtain employment in museums and other cultural heritage agencies. The MA provides students with the necessary research, conceptual, and analytical skills needed to fill the demand for qualified museum and cultural heritage professionals and to provide a solid academic foundation for advanced research.

The program requires thirty-six credit hours: twelve hours of required core courses, six to nine hours in Art History courses (depending on the track), six hours in Museum and Cultural Heritage electives (that may be taken outside the department), six to nine hours of internship (depending on track), and a three-credit capstone project. Students acquire expertise in a major area by taking three of their five Art History courses in a single field of study. Students are required to demonstrate proficiency in one foreign language.

A minimum grade of "B–" is necessary for courses to be counted toward fulfillment of these credits.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in the History and Criticism of Art

The Doctor of Philosophy is a research degree designed to form a critical and productive scholar by focusing on a particular field within the history of art. The degree is suited to students who intend to continue to advanced work at the highest level, either in university teaching or in a museum. The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to conduct original research and to integrate it with larger domains of knowledge. The program consists of a minimum of thirty-six semester hours of coursework beyond the master's degree plus a minimum of twenty-four semester hours of supervised dissertation research. A minimum grade of "B–" is necessary for courses to be counted toward fulfillment of the degree requirements. The requirements are as follows:

  1. One course in methods of art history (ARH 5813) if not already taken at FSU
  2. Four courses in a major area of study (Medieval, Renaissance/Baroque, Modern/Contemporary, or Visual Cultures of the Americas)
  3. Five courses, of which two may be electives to be selected in consultation with the student's major professor and the graduate advisor. These might be taken in other areas of art history or in other disciplines (courses must be approved by the graduate advisor and are dependent on the major and minor areas of study)
  4. Twenty-four semester hours of supervised dissertation research
  5. Demonstration of reading knowledge in a second foreign language (usually French and German are preferred but language requirements for students with a specialization in non-Western art may differ). Depending upon area of specialization, additional languages may be required
  6. Satisfactory completion of a doctoral examination concerning material in the major field
  7. Satisfactory defense of a dissertation that makes an original contribution to scholarship

It should be noted that the University requires that doctoral students participate in Scholarly Engagement that encourages interaction with peers on a national level by presenting at conferences, seminars, and symposia.

Definition of Prefix

ARH—Art History

Graduate Courses

ARH 5068. History of Modern Architecture (3). This course traces the major tendencies of European and American architecture from the Enlightenment to World War II. Topics include the relationship between the construction of national identity and the development of architectural form, the roles of historicism and revivalism in architecture of the period, and the development of new industrially-produced materials in both public and private spaces.

ARH 5076. Word and Image Studies (3). This course offers an introduction to the methodologies and purposes of word and image studies, especially in terms of the relationship between visual and literal material culture. The course focuses on inter-artistic and interdisciplinary topics.

ARH 5111. Art and Archaeology of the Bronze Age in the Aegean (3). This course is a detailed study of the major archaeological evidence related to the Bronze Age in Crete and Greece; the major sites, monuments, and artistic works are studied and analyzed.

ARH 5119. Archaeology in Ancient Egypt (3). This course is a survey of the archaeology and art of Ancient Egypt from the Pre-dynastic to the Ptolemaic and Roman periods. Emphasis is placed upon the art, architecture, and culture of the Old and New Kingdoms.

ARH 5125. Etruscan Art and Archaeology (3). This course is a critical study and appraisal of Etruscan monuments and artistic works; major archaeological evidence for Etruscan culture.

ARH 5140. Greek Art and Archaeology of the Fifth and Fourth Centuries BC (3). This course is a careful study of the monuments of classical Greece and its artistic productions; study of archaeological evidence and the accomplishments of classical Greek Art.

ARH 5160. Art and Archaeology of the Early Roman Empire (3). This course is an analysis of Roman architecture, painting, sculpture, and other arts from Augustus through the Antonines, and the archaeological evidence for the chronology and cultural history of the early imperial period.

ARH 5174r. Studies in Classical Art and Archaeology (3). This course focuses on studies in specific aspects of Greek and Roman art and archaeology. May be repeated to a maximum of six semester hours.

ARH 5220. Early Christian and Byzantine Art (3). This course explores Byzantine art and architecture from the rise of Christianity in the second and third centuries to the end of the sixth century. Emphasis is placed on how imperial rulers used art to further their political and religious agendas.

ARH 5221. Early Medieval Art (3). This course considers the development of the uses of art in the European Middle Ages, from Barbarian metal work to the acceptance of the classical tradition, to the first mature pan-European art of Romanesque architecture and sculpture. Topics of special interest include pilgrimage, imperial imagery, manuscripts, and monasteries.

ARH 5222. Medieval Illustrated Manuscripts (3). This course traces the history of book illustration in Western Europe from Insular Gospel Books (ca. 700) and Carolingian Bibles (ca. 800) to deluxe Gothic literary and devotional books produced until the introduction of printing during the later Middle Ages (ca. 1450).

ARH 5223. Late Antique and Early Christian Art (3). This course focuses on the art and architecture in Late Antiquity, a time of transition from the Roman to the Medieval periods. Emphasis is on the processes of transmission, adoption, and adaptation of established iconographies and architectural forms from Jewish and pagan arts to serve the needs of the newly established Christian religion.

ARH 5240. Later Medieval Art (3). Generally called Gothic art, this course explores the cathedrals (including their sculpture and stained glass) built by bishops and towns, as well as the castles, sumptuous arts, and manuscripts commissioned by princes and lords. Topics of special interest include the Black Death, devotional art, civic expression, and the arts of the courts.

ARH 5321. Early Italian Renaissance Art: 15th Century (3). This course is an examination of how social and historical issues influenced the arts during the first great cultural flowering of the Renaissance in Florence, Rome, and Venice. Discussion centers on how the requirements of the patron, the vitality of local traditions, and the interaction among the arts all contributed to the creation of the new Renaissance vocabulary.

ARH 5322. Later Italian Renaissance Art: 16th Century (3). This course examines works by the great masters of the Renaissance, including Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Titian, against the backdrop of the social and political realities of the day. Discussion will include the rise of the artist-hero, the sources and meaning of Mannerism, and the impact of the religious controversies of the age.

ARH 5340. Northern European Renaissance Art (3). This course discusses developments in northern European fifteenth and sixteenth century art with emphasis on painting and printmaking: Flemish, French, German, and Dutch artists.

ARH 5360. Southern Baroque Art (3). This course investigates painting, sculpture, and architecture in Italy and Spain during the 17th century, stressing the theatrical, ecstatic, and virtuoso character of works produced for royalty, the Church, and the rising middle class by such masters as Caravaggio, Bernini, and Velázquez.

ARH 5361. Northern Baroque Art (3). This course examines the Golden Age of painting, sculpture, and architecture in France, England, and the Netherlands. Discusses how such figures as Rembrandt and Vermeer encoded meaning in works of detailed realism and contributed to the rise of new subjects in art, including still-life, landscape, and portraiture.

ARH 5363. 18th-Century Art (3). This course is a study of painting, sculpture and architecture produced in Western Europe during the Enlightenment, with emphasis on the luxurious, sensual art of the Rococo, the rational classicism of the Palladian Revival, the new moral and philosophical image of women, and the rise of the decorative arts.

ARH 5420. Modern European Art: Neoclassicism through Impressionism (3). This course discusses European art from 1780–1880, concentrating on the evolving dialogue between academic and anti-academic practices through an investigation of the relationship between theory, criticism, and techniques of representation. Topics of inquiry include: David and Neoclassicism; British landscape painting; Delacroix and French Romanticism; Courbet's Realism and Manet's Naturalism; and French Impressionism.

ARH 5445. Modern European Art: Postimpressionism through Surrealism (3). This course covers the development of art from 1880–1940. Topics of discussion include abstraction, symbolism, surrealism, as well as the relationship between the techniques and forms of abstract representation and contemporary philosophical, social, scientific and political events. The writing of artists and critics provide the basis for this inquiry.

ARH 5556. Arts of Japan (3). This course is an introduction to the arts and culture of Japan, focusing on key monuments and artistic traditions that have played a central role in Japanese art and society. It covers, chronologically, the Pre-historic Age, Shinto, Buddhism, Court Culture, Zen Buddhism, Samurai Government, and the Industrial Age.

ARH 5558. Arts of China (3). This course is a survey of the major epochs of Chinese art from prehistoric times to the modern period. The course examines the important artistic traditions developed in China: bronzes, funerary and architectural monuments, painting and calligraphy, Buddhist sculpture, and ceramics.

ARH 5575. Islamic Art and Architecture, 7th - 21st Centuries (3). This course focuses on Islamic art, architecture, and urbanism. It covers the definition of Islamic art and architecture, the historical placement of Islamic art within the medieval context, the problem of ornamentation and figurative representation in the Islamic artistic tradition, the question of revivalism and reappropriation of antiquities and classical styles, as well as the politics of the study of Islamic art and its historiography.

ARH 5605. Native American Arts and Architecture of the Southwest (3). This course discusses the arts and architecture of the Native American peoples of the Southwest, beginning with ancient times and emphasizing the arts of the present Pueblo people from the 16th century to the present.

ARH 5625. American Art before 1940 (3). Prerequisite: Graduate standing in art history or instructor permission. This course familiarizes students with the literature in the history of U.S. art relevant to the period covered and the critical issues driving the field. Theme for the seminar varies.

ARH 5648. Art after 1940 (3). This course covers American and European art from Abstract Expressionism to the present. The course examines the reactions against Abstract Expressionism and investigates late-modernist practices (e.g., Pop Art, Minimalism, Conceptualism, Earth Art, Performance Art). Topics discussed include contemporary artistic practices and the relationship between modernism and postmodernism.

ARH 5659. Great Traditions in Mesoamerican Art and Culture (3). This course introduces the art and architecture of Mesoamerica from the rise of the Olmec (1500 B.C.) to the Spanish conquest of the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan in 1521. Focus is placed on how changes in visual culture reflect larger religious and political transformations.

ARH 5715. History of Photography (3). This course examines the history of photography from its invention in the 1830s to the present. Topics covered include historical debates about photography's status as an art form, commercial and scientific applications, photojournalism and propaganda, the rise of amateur photography, as well as contemporary trends and practices. Focus is placed on recent scholarship in the field.

ARH 5725. History of Graphics (3). This course is a survey of artists and processes in western printmaking from woodcut to silk screen.

ARH 5797. Seminar in Museum Studies (3). This course explores theoretical and practical approaches to museum operation and the historical development of the art museum in America.

ARH 5799. Cultural Heritage Theory and Practice (3). This course is a graduate level introduction to key issues in the field of cultural heritage, including such topics as definitions of tangible and intangible cultural heritage, the role of public opinion and tourism in the protection and interpretation of cultural heritage, the impact of development and conflict, questions of authenticity and identity, international law, and ethics.

ARH 5806r. Seminar in the History and Criticism of Art (3). This course is a special topics graduate seminar in the History and Criticism of Art. May be repeated to a maximum of thirty-three semester hours. May be repeated within the same term.

ARH 5813. Seminar in the Methods of Art History (3). This course is a seminar in methodology required of art history graduate students.

ARH 5838. The Museum Object (3). Prerequisite: Must be currently enrolled in a graduate-degree program in a department participating in the Museum Studies Certificate Program or have a graduate degree in a related discipline. This course covers the philosophy and practice of acquiring the museum object; the processing of the object in an institutional setting; research methods and interpretation; philosophy in methods of presenting the object and its interpretation through exhibition and display; and various forms of publications and dissemination.

ARH 5864. Methods and Theory for the Study of World Arts (3). Prerequisite: ARH 5813. This course offers an introduction to the primary methodological and theoretical foundations for the study of World Arts. Students question how World Arts are defined, study relevant methodologies (e.g., anthropology, post-colonial studies, and cultural studies), consider traditional-art historical methodologies from a World-Arts perspective, and examine critical issues pertaining to the study of art and architecture of particular world areas.

ARH 5885. Introduction to Appraising Personal Property (4). This course is a basic introduction to appraising personal property. It covers all aspects of proper appraisal procedure and methodology for fine art: painting, drawing, sculpture, prints, ceramics, silver, glass, jewelry, books, etc. This course follows the proper requirements of USPAP and the IRS.

ARH 5886. Uniform Standards for Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) (4). This course follows the U.S. Government Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice as they apply to the Fine Arts.

ARH 5887. Walt Disney and the American Century (3). This course considers the artistic output of Walt Disney and his company in relation to fine art, society and politics during the twentieth century, emphasizing contributions in the realms of film, architecture and the theme park. In an effort to judge Disney's impact on the production and consumption of leisure, students engage with some thirty years of academic critical discourse.

ARH 5907r. Directed Individual Study (1–5). May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours within the same term.

ARH 5913r. Supervised Research (1–15). (S/U grade only). May be repeated within the same term to a maximum of fifteen semester hours. A maximum of three semester hours may apply to a master's degree.

ARH 5934r. Tutorial in Classical Archeology (1-3). Prerequisite: instructor permission. This course uses intensive readings and discussion within a small group centered upon a specific topic or research problem in classical archaeology. May be repeated when topics vary to a maximum of nine semester hours.

ARH 5940r. Supervised Teaching (1–15). (S/U grade only). May be repeated within the same term to a maximum of fifteen semester hours. A maximum of three semester hours may apply to a master's degree.

ARH 5942r. Internship in Museum Studies (1–6). This course is an internship in a collaborative museum to provide students with firsthand knowledge of, and practical experience in, museums. Concurrent registration is permitted. May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours within the same term.

ARH 5971r. Thesis (1–6). (S/U grade only). A minimum of six semester hours credit is required.

ARH 6292r. Topics in Medieval Art: Seminar (3). This course is an advanced seminar on specific topic within the area of Medieval art. Specific topics vary. May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.

ARH 6394r. Topics in Renaissance Art: Seminar (3). This course is an advanced seminar on specific topic within the area of Renaissance art and architecture. Specific topics vary. May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.

ARH 6398r. Topics in Baroque Art: Seminar (3). This course is an advanced seminar on specific topic within the area of Baroque art. Specific topics vary. May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.

ARH 6592r. Topics in Eastern Art: Seminar (3). This course is an advanced seminar on specific topics within the area of Eastern art. Specific topics vary. May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.

ARH 6694r. Topics in 19th-Century Art: Seminar (3). This course is an advanced seminar on specific topic within the area of nineteenth century art. Specific topics vary. May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.

ARH 6695r. Topics in 20th-Century Art: Seminar (3). This course is an advanced seminar on specific topic within the area of twentieth century art. Specific topics vary. May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours within the same term.

ARH 6718. Documentary Photography and Film (3). This seminar studies the forms, strategies, conventions, and criticism of documentary photography and film in the U.S., from the late 19th century to the present. The course considers the rhetoric of the images and the contemporary circumstances in which that rhetoric is bound, while also locating the tensions between reality and the fictionality of representation.

ARH 6904r. Readings for Examinations (1–12). (S/U grade only). This course is designated for graduate students who have completed or virtually completed all of their required coursework and are preparing for their comprehensive examinations. May be repeated within the same term to a maximum of twenty-four semester hours.

ARH 6920r. Teaching Colloquium in Art History (1–12.) (S/U grade only). This course is designed for all doctoral students who have not yet reached candidacy and all graduate students teaching for the department for the first time. May be repeated from term to term to a maximum of twelve semester hours.

ARH 6936r. Topics in World Arts: Seminar (3). This advanced seminar covers specific and variable topics within the area of World Arts. May be repeated to a maximum of nine semester hours.

ARH 6937r. Doctoral Seminar in Classical Archaeology (3). Prerequisite: CLA 5936. This course is a doctoral-level seminar devoted to a specific issue in classical archaeology. May be repeated when topics vary to a maximum of twenty-four semester hours.

ARH 6980r. Dissertation (1–12). (S/U grade only). May be repeated to a maximum of twelve semester hours.

ARH 8964r. Preliminary Doctoral Examination (0). (P/F grade only.)

ARH 8967r. Master's Comprehensive Examination (0). (P/F grade only.)

ARH 8976r. Master's Thesis Defense (0). (P/F grade only.)

ARH 8985r. Dissertation Defense (0). (P/F grade only.)