Hiram College

The study of past and present artistic production -- its practitioners, methods, materials, patronage, purposes, and meanings within the culture that gave rise to it -- constitutes the discipline of art history.

Art History is a unique field of study, one that most high school students do not encounter prior to college (unlike English, history or psychology, for example). It is a perfect discipline for those with broad ranging interests in the liberal arts. While cultural artifacts of the past (architecture, sculpture, paintings, drawing, print arts, ceramics, urban planning, etc) are the primary focus of study, understanding the importance and meaning of these artifacts can lead students into many rich avenues of investigation from religion to history, to sociology, politics, economics, science, literature, dance, music, theater—indeed all aspects of human activity can and do inform the making of art. Because art history is deeply enmeshed in the liberal arts, students are prepared to be critical observers and independent thinkers, creative and scholarly writers and speakers, acutely sensitive to aesthetic principles and to diverse cultural viewpoints, and gifted with a lifelong curiosity about the world in which we live.

Required Courses

  • History of Western Art
  • Early Modern Art
  • Contemporary Art
  • Independent Research
  • Two studio art courses
  • Competence in a language at the 103 level, preferably French

For full descriptions, see the Course Catalog.