Eliza Garrison

Associate Professor of History of Art & Architecture

Department Chair

 work(802) 443-5296
 Fall Term 2018-Monday and Tuesday 4:30 p.m.-6:00 p.m, and by appointment in MCA 213.
 Mahaney Center for the Arts 213

Eliza Garrison received her Ph.D. from Northwestern University in 2005. Her research focuses on the art of the Carolingian and Ottonian Empires, the historiography of medieval art, and, most recently, on the importance of copies, copying, and simulacra in the Early Middle Ages.  She is also broadly interested in processes of political representation, theories of portraiture, and the incorporation of spolia into medieval art objects.  Her work has appeared in the Oxford Art Journal, Gesta, Peregrinations, and Postmedieval Forum.  A book drawn from her dissertation, Ottonian Imperial Art and Portraiture: The Artistic Patronage of Otto III and Henry II, appeared in 2012 with Ashgate.



Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

HARC 0100 - Monuments/Ideas in Western Art      

Monuments and Ideas in Western Art
This course is an introduction to the study of Western art history through an investigation of selected art works, considered individually and in broader contexts. The course chronicles the evolution in painting, sculpture, and architecture of the western world. It is designed for those who wish to build a broad acquaintance with the major works and ideas of Western art in their historical settings and to develop tools for understanding these works of art as aesthetic objects and bearers of meaning for the societies, groups, or individuals that produced them. Registration priority will be given to first and second year students. 2 hrs. lect./1 hr. disc. ART EUR HIS

Fall 2017

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HARC 0214 - Northern Renaissance Art      

Northern Renaissance Art: The Rhetoric of the Real
This course will provide students with an overview of art objects created in a variety of media in Northern Europe between the 15th and 16th centuries. We will analyze the changing uses of art in cultures where people defined themselves and the depths of their piety in relation to their material wealth and social standing. During the last few weeks of the semester, the class will look at the emergence of genre painting and the representation of peasant life. We will consider how these phenomena were tied to the histories and careers of individual artists and their workshops. General questions will include: How does the convincing representation of "reality" make for a persuasive image? What are the benefits of fusing secular and religious subject matter? Is it valid to speak of a new artistic self-awareness? 3 hrs. lect. ART EUR HIS

Spring 2015, Spring 2017, Fall 2018

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HARC 0219 - Early Medieval &Romanesque Art      

Understanding Early Medieval and Romanesque Art: Seeing Ste. Foy
This course is an introduction to key artworks and architectural monuments made and built in Europe during the eighth through twelfth centuries. We will study such structures as Charlemagne's Palace Chapel and the reliquary statue of Ste. Foy at Conques to explore how these monuments were products of independent cultures that valued the creation of a visual fusion between the Judeo-Christian God and humankind. Likely lines of inquiry include: the persistence of a Classical ideal and its myriad adaptations; the coordination of art objects to specific locations; and, not least, the self-conscious staging of political and ecclesiastical power. 3 hrs lect. ART EUR HIS

Spring 2017, Spring 2019

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HARC 0251 - Court, Castle, & Cathedral      

Court, Castle, and Cathedral: The Gothic World
This survey course will consider closely the major architectural monuments of the Gothic period in Western Europe, using them as a point of departure in a larger consideration of the artistic culture of this time. In looking at Gothic art and architecture, the class will ask some of the following questions: How were buildings embedded in the promotion of distinct political programs? How do liturgical considerations determine the shapes of buildings and sites? How can we track the emergence of a non-Christian "other" in art of all media? How can we characterize the visual and intellectual culture of "courtly love"? 3 hrs. lect. ART EUR HIS

Spring 2018

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HARC 0301 - Ways of Seeing      

Ways of Seeing
In this course we will focus on the various methods and theories that can enrich and deepen our understanding of art, architecture, and visual culture. Students will hone their analytical skills, both verbal and written, often with recourse to objects from the College Museum and the campus at large. In general, this seminar will develop students’ awareness of objects of culture broadly construed, and sharpen their understanding of the scope and intellectual history of the field. To be taken during the sophomore or junior year as a prerequisite for HARC 0710 and HARC 0711. 3 hrs. sem. ART CW

Winter 2015, Spring 2018, Spring 2019

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HARC 0306 - Medieval Manuscripts      

Materiality and Meaning in Medieval Manuscripts
Before the invention of the printing press in the middle of the fifteenth century, all books were written by hand, a manual process that informed the term “manuscript.” The most luxurious of medieval manuscripts were illuminated with all manner of images, and these, along with the books themselves, were often understood as embodiments of divine wisdom. In this seminar we will consider medieval manuscripts as artworks and study the history of medieval manuscript illumination. Along the way, we will analyze the functions of various types of texts, learn about the rich relationships between text and image, consider the emergence of silent reading, and study the diverse audiences for medieval books. Over the course of the roughly one thousand years that we will cover in this course, we will see the book change from a mysterious receptacle of sacred wisdom to a commodity created for a mass market. 3 hrs. sem. ART EUR

Fall 2014, Fall 2017

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HARC 0344 / GRMN 0344 - Body in German & Austrian Art      

Naked Truth: Approaches to the Body in Early 20th Century German-Austrian Art (in English)
In this team-taught course we will examine conceptions of the human body and the manner of its visualization in Germany and Austria in the period leading up to and following the First World War. Part of our inquiry will involve the planning of an exhibition of original artworks from the holdings of the Sabarsky Foundation (New York City), provisionally entitled Naked Truth, at the Middlebury College Museum in the fall semester of 2015. With the help of primary source readings from the period, and secondary readings in philosophy, critical and literary theory, and art history, we will consider how German and Austrian artists turned to the nude body as the site through which questions of personal and political freedom, desire, beauty, nature, culture, and their antonyms could be negotiated and represented. Taking these ideas as one critical point of departure, the class will work with select drawings, paintings, and etchings by Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Otto Dix, and Käthe Kollwitz, among others. 3 hrs. sem. ART EUR PHL

Spring 2015

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HARC 0353 - Medieval Bodies      

Medieval Bodies
In this seminar we will examine how medieval European thinkers and artists theorized and visualized the body in ways that are vastly different from the ways in which the body is conceptualized today. Indeed, the “medieval body” was not a monolithic entity, but rather a shifting constellation of ideas and practices that waxed, waned, and coexisted throughout the Middle Ages. A body could be understood as an earthly body — sexed, fleshly, corruptible — as well as a heavenly and divine body, including Christ’s own. Our considerations will further contextualize representations of gendered, racialized, clerical, monstrous, animal, virginal, non-Christian, heretical, resurrected, and uncircumscribable bodies. Readings of the secondary literature will broaden readings of primary source materials, and our discussions will remain cognizant of gender-, sexuality-, race-, and performance-critical methods. There are no prerequisites for this course, but students will find it helpful to have some familiarity with either the history of art or with medieval history. 3hrs sem. ART EUR HIS

Fall 2018

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HARC 0510 - Advanced Studies      

Advanced Studies
Supervised independent work in art history, museum studies, or architectural studies. (Approval Required)

Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015, Winter 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Winter 2018, Winter 2019

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HARC 0540 - Independent Museum Studies      

Supervised Independent Work in Museum Studies
This practicum builds upon the Museum Assistants Program (MAP), the hands-on museum education program at the Middlebury College Museum of Art. In MAP, the Curator of Education trains students to conduct tours of the Museum’s permanent collection and of special exhibitions for audiences of peers, school groups, and the general public. Combining service learning with the opportunity to both support and learn more about the arts, students gain expertise in public speaking, art history, and public programming. HARC 0540 should be taken concurrently with the second semester of MAP. The class will culminate with a public presentation on a museum-related topic evaluated by a faculty member of the Department of History of Art & Architecture. (Approval required)

Fall 2014

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HARC 0710 - Senior Thesis Research Seminar      

Senior Thesis Research Seminar
In this course students will conceive, undertake research, and plan the organization of their senior thesis in art history or senior museum studies projects. Seminar discussions and workshops will focus on research strategies, conventions in art historical writing, project design, and public presentation skills. (HARC 0301; Approval Required) 3 hr. sem.

Fall 2014, Fall 2016

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HARC 0711 - SNR Thesis: Research/Writing      

Senior Thesis: Research and Writing
This course is a continuation of HARC 0710 which consists of ongoing, supervised independent research, plus organizing, writing and presenting a senior thesis. (HARC 0301 and HARC 0710). WTR

Winter 2015, Winter 2016

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•    Article, “Otto III at Aachen” in special issue of Peregrinations devoted to Ottonian Art, forthcoming March 2010

•    Article, “A Curious Commission: The Reliquary of St. Servatius in Quedlinburg,” forthcoming in Gesta, March 2010

•    Article, “Ottonian Art and its Afterlife: Revisiting Percy Ernst Schramm’s Portraiture Idea,” Oxford Art Journal, volume 32, number 2 (June 2009): 205-222

•    Book Chapter, “Henry II’s renovatio in the Pericope Book and Regensburg Sacramentary,” in The White Mantle of Churches: Architecture, Liturgy and Art Around the Millennium, ed. Nigel Hiscock (Turnhout: Brepols, 2003), 57-79

Department of History of Art & Architecture

Eliza Garrison, Chair
Michaela Davico, Department Coordinator

Mahaney Center for the Arts
72 Porter Field Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753