Teaching Art History to Design Students

By Eser Selen, Gul Kacmaz Erk and Christopher Wilson.

Published by The Humanities Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Art History is often seen as a mandatory core course in the curricula of design programs but it is rarely tailored to the needs and goals of such programs. Instead, the traditional chronological organization of lecture topics, invariably beginning with the “Venus of Willendorf” (c. 25,000 BC) is presented in order to impart to the students a supposed holistic “big picture.” This essay outlines the re-structuring of a two-semester first-year faculty-wide introductory art history course, entitled “History of Art and Design,” in the Faculty of Fine Arts and Design at Izmir University of Economics, Izmir, Turkey. The course was re-configured from a conventional chronologically-presented (time-oriented) lecture series to a thematically-presented (topic-oriented) lecture series more relevant to the students of the faculty – architecture, interior architecture, graphic design, industrial design, and fashion design students.

Keywords: Teaching Art History, Design Curricula

The International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 5, Issue 7, pp.65-72. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 622.437KB).

Eser Selen

Lecturer, Department of Communication Design, Izmir University of Economics, Izmir, Turkey

Eser Selen received her Bachelors (1997) and Masters (1999) degrees in Fine Arts from Bilkent University, Ankara, TURKEY and Masters (2002) degree in Performance Studies from New York University, USA. She is a PhD Candidate (ABD) in Performance Studies at New York University, writing her dissertation entitled “The Work of Sacrifice: Gender Performativity, Modernity, and Islam in Turkish Contemporary Performance.” Ms. Selen is also a visual artist whose work encompasses performance art, installation and video. She has presented and performed in Europe, the United States and the Middle East. She is currently a Lecturer in the Communication Design Department, Faculty of Art and Design at Izmir University of Economics, TURKEY.

Dr. Gul Kacmaz Erk

assistant professor, department of architecture, Izmir University of Ecanomics, izmir, Turkey

Gul Kacmaz Erk received her Bachelor (1994) and Master (1996) degrees in Architecture from Middle East Technical University, Ankara, TURKEY and her PhD (2004) in Architectural Design from Istanbul Technical University, researching her dissertation, entitled Architectural Space in the Digital Age: Cyberspace, Hyperspace and Exospace in Science Fiction Films, at the University of Pennsylvania (2001-2003). She has worked as an Adjunct Professor at Philadelphia University (2002) and Delft University of Technology (2005) and as a practicing architect in Istanbul and Amsterdam. She is currently working as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Architecture at Izmir University of Economics, TURKEY.

Christopher Wilson

Lecturer, Department of Architecture, Faculty of Fine Arts and Design, Izmir University of Econmics, Izmir, Turkey

Christopher S. Wilson received his professional BArch degree from Temple University, Philadelphia, in 1992 and an MA in the "Histories and Theories of Architecture" from The Architectural Association, London, in 1997. He recently completed his PhD dissertation in architecture at The Graduate School of Natural and Applied Sciences of Middle East Technical University, Ankara, TURKEY, on the relationship between architecture, memory, identity, and nationalism in the funerary architecture of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. Currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Architecture, Faculty of Art and Design at Izmir University of Economics, TURKEY, Mr. Wilson has also worked professionally as an architect in Philadelphia, Berlin, and London, and is a registered architect with the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

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