Art Humanities

Embracing architecture, sculpture, and painting, the Art Humanities core courses teach students how to look at, think about, and engage in critical discussion of the visual arts. Frequent visits to New York's museums, private collections, and architectural sites bring students face to face with many of the world's most celebrated artworks. Students learn to respond intelligently to a variety of artistic genres by developing analytical skills and a conceptual framework for interpretation.

GS students must fulfill the Art Humanities requirement by taking one of the following: 

Note: If the art humanities requirement is fulfilled with Masterpieces of Western Art (UN1121), students should not take Barnard Art History 1001 or 1002, as this would constitute a duplication of coursework and thus not count toward the GS degree.

Exemption from the Art Humanities Requirement

All Columbia College and General Studies students are required to take Art Humanities. In limited circumstances, however, students may be eligible for an exemption from this requirement.

Students requesting an exemption must have completed at least four semester-length, college-level Art History courses with a grade of C or higher. (Please note that visual arts courses do not qualify.) Coursework must cover multiple historical periods, with at least one course on art of the Renaissance era (or an earlier era) and one course on art of a post-Renaissance era.

Students who meet these requirements should contact their GS advisor for assistance in submitting to the Center for the Core Curriculum a transcript of previous coursework, a statement explaining why the exemption is requested, and copies of the syllabi for all Art History courses completed. The exemption request must be made during the student’s first semester of enrollment at Columbia during the Core petition period, typically the first week of classes.