Loyola University Chicago

John Felice Rome Center


Fall 2012

Instructor:      Dr. Giovanni SCICHILONE


      Address:              Via Gran Bretagna, 20  -  00196  Rome


       Phones:              06 807 4936 (home, with answering machine; 9am/9pm)

                                    348 82 77 331 (mobile; 9am/9pm)


         E-mail:            giovanniscichilone@yahoo.it


This course synthetically discusses origins and evolution of Greek Art against a relatively broad background, with reference to the surviving evidence, archaeological and literary as well. Special attention is given to the connection established –across time and space- by the Greeks with their Mediterranean neighbors; that as a part of the complex processes leading to the “formation” of Greek Art. Reference will also be made to the impact of Greek culture as a whole over later cultures of our world, well beyond the Mediterranean basin.



Through the study of individual works and “classes of works” (ranging from architecture to sculpture and painting, all using a variety of media and spanning in time from the 2nd millennium BCE to the last century BCE) students will learn to “see” and “decipher” a choice of examples of Greek Art. The experience of class-work will be enriched by one on-site class (see Syllabus) to discuss the elusive world of Greek painting. Through these learning-experiences they will eventually master the complexity of the intellectual and critical “tools” developed by modern criticism in the interpretation of artistic phenomena.


Due to rich connections established within the domain of Classical Scholarship, students will have an overview of different approaches taken in modern times to explore the world of ancient Greek Art from different viewpoints within the spectrum of the Human Sciences. This experience will help them in building critical skills even beyond the realm of the visual arts, while seeing to what an extent the reading of “visual codes” in the arts can help us in reconstructing –across time and space- messages from other cultures.


Through occasional references and readings, moreover, students will see connections among the languages of material cultures and those of “immaterial creations” like poetry and literature: what eventually might help them in building more articulated views on human societies as seen in the context of our world. Acquisition of this knowledge will enable students to better analyze and describe objects of Greek Art, to introduce thoughtfully the considered views of others and to formulate their own fresh interpretations and viewpoints about how and why such art was produced and what it means.  As a result of this intellectual experience, they will be better able to participate in the artistic-cultural life of their communities.



Every lesson will be richly illustrated by original slides from the instructor’s collection; occasionally, readings of ancient written sources in translation will be offered. In all cases, class-discussion and active participation to class-work are to be considered crucial for the course and are highly encouraged and specially valued by the instructor. Moreover, since the wealth of points and comparisons developed in class can only in part find a substitute in the required readings, class-attendance is strongly recommended.


Before the midterm, the students will choose, under the instructor’s guidance, the topic for an individual project in writing (a brief essay or a book-report for the equivalent of 4 to 6 typewritten pages) ideally reflecting a personal interest within the scope of the course. Such “home-projects” are to be given to the instructor  by  mid-November  (precise dates t.b.a.).


In this context it’s worth to remind students that will be given for granted their knowledge of our University’s policy on matters regarding Academic Integrity (see: http://www.luc.academics/undergraduate/catalog/standards.html)



(References are made to John Boardman’s GREEK ART, 4th edition, on sale at the bookstore. Other readings are made available as partial abstracts on Blackboard in E-Reserve,  as per syllabus below).



Lesson 1                          Greek Art today: an introduction.  The Greek-speaking ancestors of the Greeks in the 2nd millennium BCE and their neighbours (pp. 9 to 28)          Life, society and art in the Bronze-Age citadels of Mycenaean Greece. (pp 9 to 28, plus Abstract from  P.LEVEQUE, Ancient Greece, in E-Reserve on Blackboard)

Lesson 2                          The collapse of the Mycenaean kingdoms in the 12th century BCE. The rise of the Greek villages: economy and material culture. The role of pottery. Athens in the “Dark Ages” of Greece. (pp. 29 to 47)

Lesson 3                          The dawn of Greek architecture: house, sanctuary and temple in the 8th c. BCE. Overseas contacts of the Greeks. The rise of “pan-Hellenic” sanctuaries at Olympia and Delphi. “Foundations away from home”: the Greek “colonies” overseas. (pp. 48 to 54)

Lesson 4                          The Greeks, their art and their crafts in the Mediterranean world of the 7th c. BCE. Corinth, Athens and their artistic markets. (pp. 54 to 69)

Lesson 5                          The “formalization” of artistic types: TEMPLE and STATUE in the Greek world of the 7th c. BCE. (pp. 69 to 82 + class-notes)

Lesson 6                          Archaic Greek Art: aspects of sculpture and architecture in the Greek world, 600 to 500 BCE. (pp. 83 to 99)



                                         (on-site class). The lost treasure of Greek easel- and wall-painting. Painted pottery in the Archaic period: potter, painter, techniques and styles. (pp. 100 to 123)

Lesson 7 and 8              Art in mainland Greece 500 to 450 BCE and its context. Temples at Egina and Olympia and the role of sculpture as “decoration” of religious buildings. Art and destructions in Athens. (pp. 124 to 142)

Lesson 9 and 10            The reconstruction of Athens and its Acropolis under Pericles: schools, styles, designs. Artists and art-criticism in the High-Classical Period. Art in Greece to circa 350 BCE. (pp. 142 to 177 )

Lesson 11                       A brief overview of Greek Art in the Hellenistic Period, late 4th to 1st c. BCE. Aspects in the legacy of Greek Art through (and beyond) the Roman world. (pp. 216 to 295)




GRADING:                      The final grade for this course will be calculated in accordance with the following percentages:



                                          “Home  Project”....................................................20%

                                          Active class participation......................................10%

                                          Final test...............................................................40%





                        The grading scale adopted will be:


                                          (A) 100-95           (A-) 94-92        (B+) 91-88        (B)  87-84

                                          (B-)  83-80           (C+) 79-77       (C)   76-73        (C-) 72-70

                                          (D+) 69-65           (D)   64-60       ( F)  59  and  below















                                                                                                Valid for the  Fall Semester  of

                                                                                                the Academic Year 2012/2013






                                                                                                            Preliminary version