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Art and Architectural History

 Roger Williams University offers a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts 4+1 Degree Program and a Master of Arts in Art and Architectural History. The Master of Arts in Art and Architectural History can be completed in one or two  years, depending on the undergraduate degree of the entering students. The degree can be completed in one year by students holding an undergraduate degree in art history or historic preservation or in two years by those who have completed an undergraduate degree in another field. An Art and Architectural History minor is also offered for students in other programs.

The Art and Architectural History programs at RWU provide students with an understanding of both the visual arts and architecture in relation to society, culture and history. As an Art and Architectural History student, you will take a multidisciplinary approach to visual culture, drawing from the subject areas of anthropology, psychology, philosophy and cultural studies. The synergy between these disciplines promotes awareness of the interconnectedness of the arts and of the close connection of materials and process with meaning.

Art + Architectural History Mission Statement

The programs make use of the rich museum and gallery environment of the region for course work as well as for student internships. Art and Architectural History courses offered through the Roger Williams University Florence Study Abroad Program are an exciting and valuable option in completing the major. Students majoring in Art and Architectural History are also encouraged to take those courses relevant to the history of cultures offered in the Feinstein College of Arts and Sciences.

The Art and Architectural History bachelor's degree is complementary to others offered in the School. Compact major requirements also allow students to easily complete a double major in any number of liberal arts fields, or certification program in Elementary or Secondary Education.

The programs prepare students for graduate study in a variety of disciplines including Art and Architectural History, Museum Studies and Education, as well as for careers in teaching, museum work, art conservation and the commercial art world.

Randall K. Van Schepen, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Art and Architectural History
B.A. Trinity Christian College, M.A. State University of New York at Stony Brook, Ph.D. University of Minnesota
View Curriculum Vitae »
Contact Information
x5340
AR 258
Areas of Expertise: 
Art and Architetural History/Modern Art

Randall K. Van Schepen

Randall K.
Van Schepen
Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Art and Architectural History
B.A. Trinity Christian College, M.A. State University of New York at Stony Brook, Ph.D. University of Minnesota
sites/default/files/faculty-staff/cv/vanschepen_cv_2011.pdf
Contact Information
x5340
AR 258
Areas of Expertise: 
Art and Architetural History/Modern Art

Randall K. Van Schepen is an Art and Architectural Historian who researches and teaches the Modern and Contemporary periods. He is also a University Core Professor, teaching university Core courses at the introductory and advanced level and participating in General Education reform at RWU. After receiving an undergraduate degree in Art and teaching art at the secondary school level for a few years, he pursued a Masters degree in Art History and Criticism at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He holds a Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Minnesota.

Nermin Kura, Ph.D.
Professor of Art and Architectural History
B.A. Universite de Paris-Sorbonne Paris IV, M.A. Universite de Paris-Pantheon-Sorbonne, M.F.A. Rhode Island School of Design, Ph.D. Bilkent University
View Curriculum Vitae »
Contact Information
x3636
AR 249
Areas of Expertise: 
Art and Architectural History/Nature and Art

Nermin Kura

Nermin
Kura
Ph.D.
Professor of Art and Architectural History
B.A. Universite de Paris-Sorbonne Paris IV, M.A. Universite de Paris-Pantheon-Sorbonne, M.F.A. Rhode Island School of Design, Ph.D. Bilkent University
sites/default/files/faculty-staff/cv/kura_cv_2011.pdf
Contact Information
x3636
AR 249
Areas of Expertise: 
Art and Architectural History/Nature and Art

For Nermin Kura, the question of the occurrence of life, and its embodiment is a matter of great wonder. How is it that the transformation of energy into animate matter always occurs within a membrane, a seed, or a vessel of some sort? Could life exist without being embodied? Just as fascinating for her in their similarity to biological receptacles, are art works, vessels of meaning that cultures create for themselves to hold the thoughts and feelings that help make sense of existence. Could cultures survive without them?

Professor Kura teaches art and architectural history courses in the School of Architecture Art and Historic Preservation as well as aesthetics in the Core Program of Roger Williams University. She is also a visual artist who shows internationally. In her photography and ceramics, Nermin Kura uses forms from the biosphere such as pods and eggshells as a metaphor for the abode of life. She explores concepts of embodiment, fullness, inner pressures and the mysteries of life sustaining enclosures.

Gail Fenske, Ph.D.
Professor of Architecture
B.Arch. Arizona State University, M.S. Arch. Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Registered Architect
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Contact Information
x3640
AR 242
Areas of Expertise: 
Architecture/History of Modern Architecture/Skyscrapers

Gail Fenske

Gail
Fenske
Ph.D.
Professor of Architecture
B.Arch. Arizona State University, M.S. Arch. Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Registered Architect
sites/default/files/faculty-staff/cv/fenske_cv_032812.pdf
Contact Information
x3640
AR 242
Areas of Expertise: 
Architecture/History of Modern Architecture/Skyscrapers

Gail Fenske holds a Ph. D. in the History, Theory & Criticism of Architecture from MIT, a Master of Science in Architectural Studies (History, Theory & Criticism) from MIT, and a Bachelor of Architecture with high honors from Arizona State University. 

Teaching

Professor Fenske teaches subjects in the history of modern European architecture and American architecture at the undergraduate and graduate levels.  Current seminars include: “Skyscrapers” and “Theoretical Origins of Modernism.”   

Her courses introduce students to the substance of architectural history, and at the graduate level, to the field’s key questions and methodologies.  She emphasizes architecture’s links to broader urban, technological, and visual contexts, including painting, photography, and film.  Through field trips, students experience significant works of architecture in the Northeast.

Publications

Ulker Copur, Ph.D.
Professor of Architecture
B.Arch. Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey, M.Arch. University of Oregon, Ph.D. Cornell University, Registered Architect
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Contact Information
Areas of Expertise: 
Architecture/Sustainable Design/Non-Western World

Ulker Copur

Ulker
Copur
Ph.D.
Professor of Architecture
B.Arch. Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey, M.Arch. University of Oregon, Ph.D. Cornell University, Registered Architect
sites/default/files/faculty-staff/cv/copur_cv_2011.pdf
Contact Information
Areas of Expertise: 
Architecture/Sustainable Design/Non-Western World

Professor Ulker Copur has taught at Roger Williams University since 1986, with particular emphasis on sustainable design studios, the history of modern architecture, and seminar courses on modernism in the non-western world as well as sustainable paradigms in architecture.

Luis Esteban Carranza, Ph.D.
Professor of Architecture
B.Arch. University of Southern California, Ph.D. Harvard University
View Curriculum Vitae »
Contact Information
x3184
AR 225
Areas of Expertise: 
Architectural History/Latin American Architecture

Luis Esteban Carranza

Luis Esteban
Carranza
Ph.D.
Professor of Architecture
B.Arch. University of Southern California, Ph.D. Harvard University
sites/default/files/faculty-staff/cv/carranza_cv_2011.pdf
Contact Information
x3184
AR 225
Areas of Expertise: 
Architectural History/Latin American Architecture

Luis E. Carranza obtained his B.Arch. at the University of Southern California and his PhD in Architectural History and Theory from Harvard University. He is currently Professor of Architecture at Roger Williams University where he teaches, among other things, design studios centered on the process and materialization of design, theory of architecture, the history of modern architecture as a spatial and compositional condition, and courses on Latin American art and architecture. For him, many of these classes aim expand the knowledge of art and architecture as expressive of not only the politics of space and the nature of governance and regulation but also as powerful definers of culture in the 21st century. As part of the studio investigations and seminars on Latin American modern architecture, he has also organized multiple trips with students to Mexico City and Barcelona.

Sara A. Butler, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Art and Architectural History
B.A. Wake Forest University, M.S.T. University of New Hampshire, B.Arch. University of North Carolina at Charlotte, M.Arch.H., Ph.D. University of Virginia
View Curriculum Vitae »
Contact Information
x3415
AR 254
Areas of Expertise: 
Art and Architectural History/Historic Preservation

Sara A. Butler

Sara A.
Butler
Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Art and Architectural History
B.A. Wake Forest University, M.S.T. University of New Hampshire, B.Arch. University of North Carolina at Charlotte, M.Arch.H., Ph.D. University of Virginia
sites/default/files/faculty-staff/cv/butler_cv_2011.pdf
Contact Information
x3415
AR 254
Areas of Expertise: 
Art and Architectural History/Historic Preservation

Sara Butler is Associate Professor of Art and Architectural History at Roger Williams University, where she teaches courses on the history of American architecture, history of American art, and the history of landscape architecture. Butler earned a Ph.D. in Architectural History from the University of Virginia. She co-authored University of Virginia, The Campus Guide and was a contributing author and assistant editor for the Buildings of Virginia: Tidewater and Piedmont, a volume in the Buildings of the United States series sponsored by the Society of Architectural Historians.