This course will provide a broad survey of art and visual culture spanning the early modern world leading up to an examination of the contemporary world we live in today. This course is an important meeting of history, politics and art. In history and in different cultures images, materials and art practices are used to express and extend power and authority. Yet such images have also been used for revolution and change. In this unique course, students will be introduced to art, history and politics in a global context including European and American, Māori, Pacific, African and Asian traditions. Taking this comparative approach, the course provides students with the knowledge to recognise how power manipulates vision, concepts and materials, and how artists have challenged this power.
The classes are structured within thematic topics which include the expression and representation of authority and power; the emergence of different perspectives on modernity and different cultural and political explorations of feminism and identity, migrations and diasporas.