ARTH 242 Spring 2015 Art of Two Dimensions

Much art, even three-dimensional art, begins as a two-dimensional entity. Costume has its cloth; origami its paper; architecture its plans, sections, and elevations. This course seeks to derive the cultural and historical meaning of art that begins as two dimensions and coalesces into three. Looking at original works of art, whenever possible, students will learn to understand stereoscopic photographs, holographic art and architectural drawings. In addition we will investigate maps of the world created just before and after the interconnected seas were discovered. To understand them we will read the fictive travel literature that lead to assumptions about what the inhabitants of that world were like. We will also analyze African-American quilts, and the African cloth and weaving traditions from which they derived. And what about the fictional three-dimensional space projected onto a two dimensional surface? How did it come to be that at one point European art! aimed to use the picture plane as a window through which we look into 3-dimensional space? The brain is not hard-wired for perspective. Other cultures have preferred depicting conceptual rather than perceptual reality. How do we read the flattened spaces of Egyptian murals and Persian manuscripts? These are the sort of questions we need to delve into as we look at art and its foundations. This course is primarily a discussion class based on readings and close looking.
Class Format: seminar/discussion
Requirements/Evaluation: there will be a final exam, two short papers, and a student presentation to the class
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Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preference: none
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Divisional Attributes: Division I
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Enrollment Limit: 19
Expected Enrollment: 19
Class Number: 3089
ARTH 242 - 01 (S) SEM Art of Two Dimensions Division 1: Languages and the Arts Cancelled 3089
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