Classical Art

Module code: AR7070

You’ll investigate key figures and events in the history of classical art scholarship and explain the impact of these on the development of the discipline.

This module builds on students' previous encounters with the classical world. It investigates past approaches to art from the Greek and Roman worlds and explores how our understandings of classical art have developed. It pays particular attention to the physical and social contexts of this art and examines the significance of these contexts. Topics covered include: history of investigation and collection of classical art, methodological approaches to classical art, Greek and Roman sculpture, Greek vase painting, Greek and Roman domestic art and the reception of classical art from the Renaissance to the present. This module aims to:

  • Develop a critical understanding of the development of Art history and its relationship to classical scholarship.
  • Appreciate the range and diversity of visual culture available for the study of the past.
  • Develop analytical skills which will allow you to relate the questions raised by this module to wider social and political contexts of art.
  • Develop written skills which will allow you to bring together the written and visual material in a critical analysis.

Topics covered

  • Identifying key figures/events in the history of classical art scholarship and explain the impact of these on the discipline;
  • Different types of classical art and their contexts, using a range of sources;
  • Current methodological and theoretical approaches and their strengths and limitations;
  • Social/political importance of classical art in the ancient and modern worlds


  • 22 hours of seminars
  • 2 hours of project supervision
  • 6 hours of practical classes and workshops
  • 270 hours of guided independent study


  • Essay (50%)
  • Essay (50%)