CL 170A - Classical Archaeology: Greek Painting

Professor: Kim Shelton Place: 224 Wheeler
Office: 7212 Dwinelle Day/Time: TTh 11-12:30
Office Hours: TW 9:30-11 or by appointment



Syllabus and Readings                                                        


Course Description:

Painting is one of the most expressive and engaging media of art, especially from the ancient world. It can be literally a window into that distant time and place. In ancient Greece, painting was done on a monumental and miniature scale, in a number of settings: walls, buildings, wood panels and most of all pots.

Pottery in ancient Greece, in contrast to most cultures of the world, was an artistic medium for serious and informative images; the corpus is great and wide-ranging with images of gods, heroes, myths and legends; religious, social and civic rituals, institutions and attitudes. This pottery was also functional and was used in everyday life. The images in ancient painting inform us of their world, their beliefs and their values.

This course will survey the painting of the ancient Greek world, on a variety of media, from its beginnings in prehistory to its height of international fame and accomplishment in the Hellenistic period. We will focus on: the techniques, materials, continuity and development in styles and use, the interrelationship of the various media, decorative vs. narrative meaning, regional and chronological trends, the craft vs. the art.


Grading and attendance policy:

The course-work will consist of illustrated lectures, class discussion and extensive readings. Information necessary for the completion of the writing assignments will be presented in class and especially through class discussion, so attendance and participation are vital.


Grades will be based on class participation (10%), a research project/paper (30%) and two exams (midterm 30% and final 30%). The paper must be turned in on the scheduled day in class. Other arrangements will be possible only for genuine emergencies and must be scheduled in advance. Deadlines that conflict with athletic or other academic obligations and religious holidays should be brought to my attention with written documentation at least 14 days in advance for other arrangements to be made.


Written assignments will be graded as following: (A++=100, A+=98, A=95, A-=93, A--/B++=90, B+=88, B=85, B-=83, B--/C++=80, etc.). To receive credit on a P/NP basis, you must complete all assignments and achieve a final average of at least 70%.


Required Texts:

J. Boardman, The History of Greek Vases (2006) = GV

B. Sparkes, The Red and the Black. Studies in Greek Pottery (1996) = RB
and various readings posted on b-space ( = Bsp

Recommended Text:
P. Betancourt, Introduction to Aegean Art (2007)

Syllabus 1/28/13