The Johnson Museum provides a wealth of staff expertise and a variety of spaces to teach with colleagues across the curriculum. Museum curators, educators, and Cornell faculty teach hundreds of classes in Museum study rooms annually, from class visits by the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology to English, German, Horticulture, Landscape Architecture, and Romance Studies to the Division of Nutritional Sciences and the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. The Museum also works closely with faculty in the History of Art and Visual Studies Department in the College of Arts and Sciences and with the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning.
The Johnson Museum offers two semester-long courses co-taught with faculty, offering undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in many schools, departments, and programs at Cornell the opportunity to interact with original works of art:
The Museum and the Object
This introduction to object-based research examines best practices in the areas of collections care, connoisseurship, interpretation and display, and preservation. Topics include methods of attribution, fakes and forgeries, technique and media, restoration and conservation, art education, and theories of perception. This annual, semester-long course is taught by a faculty member in the Department of the History of Art and Visual Studies and Museum curators.
The Museum and the Public Sphere
Through site visits and a broad curricular program, this course evaluates different types of museums and their evolving missions. Topics include the nature of collections and of the audience; political and cultural questions about collecting, history, and interpretation; and the core ethical and intellectual positions held by museums. A semester-long team planning project for a regional museum is presented to the client. This course is offered every other year and taught with faculty in Historic Preservation and City and Regional Planning.
The Museum also offers seminars on exhibition practice and design, which result in a student-driven exhibition and publication, such as Topography in Translation in 2010. Beginning in Spring 2013, the Museum will participate in “Delve Deeper: Research Methods in the Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences,” a new Cornell undergraduate writing course using library resources, Cornell collections, and other sources.
Explore the work of recent courses and projects in this section.