Fall 2008


Listed in: Art and the History of Art, as ARHA-91


Joel M. Upton (Section 04)


What would it be like to “Behold” a work of art-- that is, to engage its human realization, rather than merely or exclusively observe, analyze or situate it culturally and historically? This seminar will offer a working hypothesis concerning the definition and potential of “Beholding” the “art” of art and provide each member of the seminar the opportunity to test and experience this hypothesis by way of a semester-long encounter with one work of art of their own choosing, drawing on an immediately experienced work of painting, sculpture or architecture from any period, location, or artistic tradition. Foundational works to be discussed will include Zen Buddhist temples, paintings and drawings by Rembrandt van Rijn, Gothic stained-glass windows, and Michelangelo’s last Pieta. In sharing the progress of each encounter during our class meetings, we will aim to re-imagine together contemplative action as the highest aspiration of human being. One lecture per week. Limited to 12 students. Fall semester. Professor Upton.