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Histories of Art
Overview of Prehistoric
Overview of Africa
Overview of Americas to 1900
North America to 1500
North America 1500 – 1900
South America to 1500
South America 1500 – 1900
Overview of Asia
Hinduism and Buddhism
Overview of Ancient Mediterranean
Ancient Near East
Medieval Europe & Byzantine
Overview of Medieval Europe + Byzantium
A beginner’s guide
Christianity and art
Judaism and art
The medieval book
The Islamic World
Overview of the Islamic World
Overview of Europe 1300 – 1800
Italy: 14th century
Italy: 15th century
Italy: 16th century
Northern Europe: 15th century
Northen Europe: 16th century
Spain: 15th and 16th century
Reformation and Counter-Reformation
Baroque: 17th century
Rococo: early to mid 18th century
Neoclassicism: late 18th century
British: 18th century
Overview of Europe: 19th century
Symbolism / Art Nouveau
Overview of Oceania
Overview of Modernisms 1900 – 1980
A beginner’s guide
Fauvism + Expressionism
Cubism + Early Abstraction
Dada + Surrealism
German art between the wars
Latin American modernism
American art to WWII
Postwar American art
Postwar European art
Conceptual + Performance art
Architecture + Design
Global cultures 1980 to now
Overview of Global Cultures 1980 – now
Appropriation and ideological critique
Identity and the body
Banality and kitsch
Ritual, spirituality and transcendence
Histories real and imagined
New to art history?
Looking at art
art allows us to see through the eyes of others
Approaches to art history
in our visual world, studying art’s history couldn’t be more important
Understanding religion in art
for millennia, images have acted as a bridge to the invisible and transcendent
History and interpretation
For the very beginner
a series of fun (and funny) animations
distributing knowledge for free
read online, print, or order a bound copy
More titles coming soon!
AP® Art History (vol. 1)
AP® Art History (vol. 2)
Ancient Near Eastern art
from Sumer to Persia
Ancient Egyptian Art
from the Old Kingdom to the Ptolemies
Ancient Aegean Art
Minoan, Cycladic and Mycenaean
Ancient Etruscan and Roman art
from the Etruscans to the fall of the Roman Empire
Courses and syllabi
short and long guided tours through art’s history
Bringing the long history of the United States to life.
At Risk Cultural Heritage Series: Many regions of the world struggle to protect cultural heritage in the face of numerous challenges.
Syllabi, AP and A-level art history
for the classroom
This course is about you, and your interaction with art.
millions visit museums every year. Why do we do it?
learn about a period or topic in art history in less than 2 hours
Creating + conserving
The materials and techniques used by artists, and the work of conservation.
Video creation guide
expanding the boundaries of art history in the classroom
a global, interconnected world is not as recent as we think
Expanding the Renaissance initiative
highlighting overlooked subjects, materials, artists, groups, and locales
Art by location
Traveling? Find Smarthistory content by country.
Content editors and contributors
A Smarthistory timeline
Board of Advisors and Board of Trustees
Bringing the long history of the United States to life—using works of art as primary sources.
A mini-course on endangered cultural heritage around the globe
Read online, print, or order a bound copy!
Help Smarthistory continue to make a difference
Contribute an essay
Help make art history relevant and engaging
Reading Assyrian art isn't easy — but it's always worth it.
Assyria vs Elam: The battle of Til ...
Led by aggressive warrior kings, Assyria dominated the fertile crescent for half a millennia, amassing vast wealth.
Assyria, an introduction
Holding on to pagan traditions in the early Christian era
The Symmachi Panel
If the Roman government condemned a ruler, his portraits often died with him.
—Roman sanctions against memory
Pompeii, once called the "City of the Dead," gives a marvelous sense of day-to-day Roman life.
Pompeii, an introduction
This ivory statue of a young man bears similarities to both Greek and Egyptian art.
Statuette of a Male Figure (The Palaikastro ...
This delicate type of pottery helps us understand the far-reaching trade networks in the ancient Mediterranean.
Kamares Ware Jug
This beautifully painted sarcophagus depicts an elaborate burial ritual—was it made for royalty?
Hagia Triada sarcophagus
This hollow stone vessel in the shape of a bull's head is both frighteningly realistic and beautifully stylized.
Bull’s Head Rhyton
The exuberant procession depicted on this small but luxurious object celebrates the fruits of farming the land.
This vase with a charming image of a writhing octopus was made during the height of the Minoan sea trade.
Goddess, priestess, or simply a Minoan woman? Mysteries abound in this small figurine from Knossos.
Athletic youths spring over a powerful bull—who are they, and why are they performing such a dangerous act?
Bull-leaping fresco from the palace of Knossos
This woman's striking profile has long fascinated viewers, but we know surprisingly little about who she is.
Minoan woman or goddess from the palace ...
The archaeological site of Knossos (on the island of Crete) —traditionally called a palace—is the second most popular tourist attraction in all of Greece.
The Palace at Knossos (Crete)
The ancient Nabateans cut Petra, their monumental city, from cliffs of rose red stone.
Petra: The rose red city of the ...
The rediscovery of ancient Pompeii and Herculaneum and the beginnings of archaeology.
The rediscovery of Pompeii and the other ...
Mount Vesuvius buried Pompeii two millennia ago—creating a time capsule of the evolution of Roman painting.
Roman wall painting styles
Despite what their sworn enemies the Greeks would have you believe, the Persians ruled a tolerant multi-ethnic empire.
Ancient Persia, an introduction
Founded by the famed Sargon the Great, Akkad was a powerful military empire.
Akkad, an introduction
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