Art History

Students may design their Art History learning experience toward the AP curriculum or — for the most interest-driven approach — as a general art elective.  The AP course description is below.

The AP Art History course explores such topics as the nature of art, its uses, its meanings, art making, and responses to art.  Through investigation of diverse artistic traditions of cultures from prehistory to the present, the course fosters in-depth and holistic understanding of the history of art from a global perspective.  As students study works of art in a 250-image set supplied by The College Board, as well as additional supplementary works, they apply essential art historical skills of identification and categorization within the learning objectives, such as visual, contextual, and comparative analysis.  The curriculum and content of the course are based on three sets of big ideas and essential questions intended to encourage investigation of art throughout time and place and to help students make connections between art historical concepts in the image set; essential questions frame explorations of the nature of art, art making, and our responses to art.  This AP course is designed to be the equivalent of a two-semester introductory college or university art history survey course.

Students will:

  1. Contextualize and analyze European and global artworks using form, function content, and context
  2. Gain a deep understanding of the meaning of artworks
  3. Apply complex terminology to artworks, styles and movements
  4. Learn to communicate at a post-secondary level
  5. Experience some art creating throughout the year
  6. Analyze traditions and change through global connections
  7. Interpret works of art by analyzing contextual variable
  8. Develop skills in visual, contextual, and comparative analysis
  9. Recognize and identify title, artist, date, and materials of works of art and architecture


Required works of art for AP Art History

This list links to videos, essays, images, and additional resources for the 250 required works of art for the AP Art History course and exam — all curated and published for public consumption by the wonderful Smarthistory.

Content Area 1

Global Prehistory
30,000-500 B.C.E.

  1. Apollo 11 stones (essay, imageadditional resources)
  2. Great Hall of Bulls (essayimageadditional resources)
  3. Camelid sacrum in the shape of a canine (essayimage,  additional resources)
  4. Running horned woman (essayimageadditional resources)
  5. Bushel with ibex motifs (videoimagesadditional resources)
  6. Anthropomorphic stele (essayimageadditional resources)
  7. Jade cong (videoarticleimageadditional resources)
  8. Stonehenge (essayvideoimage 1image 2additional resources)
  9. Ambum Stone (essayimageadditional resources)
  10. Tlatilco female figurine (videoessayimageadditional resources)
  11. Terracotta fragment (essayimageadditional resources)

Content Area 2
Ancient Mediterranean
3,500-300 B.C.E.

  1. White Temple and its ziggurat (essayimage 1image 2 additional resources)
  2. Palette of King Narmer (essayimagesadditional resources)
  3. Statues of votive figures, from the Temple at Eshnunna (videoimagesadditional resources)
  4. Seated Scribe (videoimagesadditional resources)
  5. Standard of Ur from the Royal Tombs at Ur (videoessayimagesadditional resources)
  6. Great Pyramids of Giza (essayimagesadditional resources)
    a. Pyramid of Khufu (essayadditional resources)
    b. Pyramid of Khafre and the Great Sphinx (essayadditional resources)
    c. Pyramid of Menkaura (essayadditional resources)
  7. King Menkaura and Queen (essayimagesadditional resources)
  8. The Law Code Stele of Hammurabi (essay/videoimagesadditional resources)
  9. Temple of Amun-Re and Hypostyle Hall (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  10. Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut (videoimagesadditional resources)
  11. Akhenaton, Nefertiti, and three daughters (videoimagesadditional resources)
  12. Tutankhamun’s tomb, innermost coffin (essay, imagesadditional resources)
  13. Last judgment of Hu-Nefer (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  14. Lamassu, citadel of Sargon II, Dur Sharrukin (videoimagesadditional resources)
  15. Athenian Agora (videoimagesadditional resources)
  16. Anavysos Kouros (videoimagesadditional resources)
  17. Peplos Kore from the Acropolis (videoimagesadditional resources)
  18. Sarcophagus of the Spouses (videoessayimagesadditional resources)
  19. Audience Hall (apadana) of Darius and Xeres (essayimagesadditional resources)
    Related: Column capital, audience hall (apadana) of Darius at Susa (videoimages)
  20. Temple of Minerva (Veii), sculpture of Apollo (essay/videoimagesadditional resources)
  21. Tomb of the Triclinium (essayimagesadditional resources)
  22. Niobides Krater (videoimagesadditional resources)
  23. Doryphoros (Spear Bearer) (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  24. Acropolis
    a. Parthenon (video/essayvideo 2imagesadditional resources)
       i. Phidias, Parthenon sculpture (pediments, metopes and frieze)  (videoimagesadditional resources)
       ii. Plaque of the Ergastines (videoimagesadditional resources)
    b. Victory adjusting her sandal, Temple of Athena Nike (videoimagesadditional resources)
  25. Grave Stele of Hegeso (videoimagesadditional resources)
  26. Winged Victory of Samothrace (videoimagesadditional resources)
  27. Great Altar of Zeus and Athena at Pergamon (videoimagesadditional resources)
  28. House of the Vettii (essayimagesadditional resources)
  29. Alexander Mosaic, House of the Faun, Pompeii (videoimagesadditional resources)
  30. Seated Boxer (videoimagesadditional resources)
  31. Head of a Roman Patrician (essayimagesadditional resources)
    Related: Veristic male portrait (videoadditional resources)
  32. Augustus of Prima Porta (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  33. Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheater) (videoimagesadditional resources)
  34. Forum of Trajan
    a. Forum (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
    b. Column (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
    c. Markets (videoimagesadditional resources)
  35. Pantheon (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  36. Ludovisi Battle Sarcophagus (videoimagesadditional resources)

Content Area 3
Early Europe and Colonial Americas
200-1750 C.E.

  1. Catacomb of Priscilla (Greek Chapel, Orant, Good Shepherd frescos) (videoimagesadditional resources)
  2. Santa Sabina (videoessayimagesadditional resources)
  3. Vienna Genesis
    a. Jacob Wrestling the Angel (videoimagesadditional resources)
    b. Rebecca and Eliezer at the Well (essayimages)
  4. San Vitale (Justinian and Theodora panels) (video/essayimages, additional resources)
  5. Hagia Sophia (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
    a. Theotokos mosaic (videoimagesadditional resources)
    b. Deësis mosaic (videoimagesadditional resources)
    c. Hagia Sophia as a mosque (videoimagesadditional resources)
  6. Merovingian looped fibulae (essayimagesadditional resources)
  7. Virgin (Theotokos) and Child between Saints Theodore and George (essayimagesadditional resources)
  8. Lindisfarne Gospels, St. Matthew, cross-carpet page; St. Luke incipit page (essayimagesadditional resources)
  9. Great Mosque, Córdoba, Spain (essayimagesadditional resources)
  10. Pyxis of al-Mughira (essayimagesadditional resources)
  11. Church of Sainte-Foy and Reliquary (essayimagesadditional resources)
  12. Bayeux Tapestry (essayimagesadditional resources)
  13. Chartres Cathedral (imagesadditional resources)
    a. early history, relic, royal portal and jamb figures (videoimagesadditional resources)
    b. interior, stained glass (videoimagesadditional resources)
    c. flying buttresses, transept, north rose and porch (videoimagesadditional resources)
  14. Dedication Page with Blanche of Castile and King Louis IX of France, (essayimageadditional resources) and Scenes from the Apocalypse (essayimage, additional resources)—both from Bibles moralisée (moralized bibles)
  15. Röttgen Pietà (video/essay,  images)
  16. Arena (Scrovegni) Chapel, including Lamentation (essayadditional resources)
    a. Introduction (video)
    b. fresco cycle (video)
    c. Lamentation (video)
    d. Last Judgment (video)
  17. Golden Haggadah (essayimagesadditional resources 1additional resources 2)
  18. Alhambra (essayadditional resources)
  19. Annunciation Triptych (Merode Altarpiece) (videoimagesadditional resources)
  20. Pazzi Chapel, Filipo Brunellschi (videoimagesadditional resources)
  21. The Arnolfini Portrait, Jan van Eyck (videoadditional resources)
  22. David, Donatello (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  23. Palazzo Rucellai, Leon Battista Alberti (video/essayadditional resources)
  24. Madonna and Child with Two Angels, Fra Filippo Lippi (videoimageadditional resources)
  25. Birth of Venus, Sandro Botticelli (videoimageadditional resources)
  26. Last Supper, Leonardo da Vinci (video/essayimageadditional resources)
  27. Adam and Eve, Albrecht Dürer (essayimageadditional resources)
  28. Sistine Chapel ceiling and altar wall frescos, Michelangelo
    a. ceiling (video/essay, study for sibyl videoadditional resources)
    b. altar wall (video/essayadditional resources)
  29. School of Athens, Raphael (videoimagesadditional resources)
  30. Isenheim Altarpiece, Matthias Grünewald (essayimagesadditional resources)
  31. Entombment of Christ, Jacobo da Pontormo (videoimage, additional resources)
  32. Allegory of Law and Grace, Lucas Cranach the Elder (essayimagesadditional resources)
  33. Venus of Urbino, Titian (videoimageadditional resources)
  34. Frontispiece of the Codex Mendoza (essayimagesadditional resources)
  35. Il Gesù, including Triumph of the Name of Jesus ceiling fresco (videoimage 1image 2additional resources)
  36. Hunters in the Snow, Pieter Bruegel the Elder (video and essayimageadditional resources)
  37. Mosque of Selim II (essayimages additional resources)
  38. Calling of Saint Matthew, Caravaggio (videoimagesadditional resources)
  39. Henri IV Receives the Portrait of of Marie de’Medici, from the Marie de’Medici Cycle, Peter Paul Rubens (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  40. Self-Portrait with Saskia, Rembrandt van Rijn (essayimageadditional resources)
  41. San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane, Francesco Borromini (videoimagesadditional resources)
  42. Ecstasy of Saint Teresa, Gian Lorenzo Bernini (videoimagesadditional resources)
  43. Angel with Arquebus, Asiel Timor Dei, Master of Calamarca (essayimageadditional resources)
  44. Las Meninas, Diego Velazquez (videoimage, additional resources)
  45. Woman Holding a Balance, Johannes Vermeer (videoimageadditional resources)
  46. The Palace at Versailles (essayimages and mapsadditional resources)
  47. Screen with Siege of Belgrade and hunting scene (videoimagesadditional resources)
  48. The Virgin of Guadalupe, Miguel González (essay, video/essayadditional resources)
  49. Fruit and Insects, Rachel Ruysch (videoimagesadditional resources)
  50. Spaniard and Indian Produce a Mestizo, attributed to Juan Rodríguez Juárez (essayimageadditional resources)
  51. The Tête à Tête, from Marriage a la Mode, William Hogarth (videoimagesadditional resources)

Content Area 4
Later Europe and 
1750-1980 C.E.

  1. Portrait of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Miguel Cabrera (essayimageadditional resources)
  2. A Philosopher Giving a Lecture on the Orrery, Joseph Wright of Derby (essayimageadditional resources)
  3. The Swing, Jean-Honoré Fragonard (videoimagesadditional resources)
  4. Monticello, Thomas Jefferson (essayimages additional resources 1, 2)
  5. The Oath of the Horatii, Jacques-Louis David (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  6. George Washington, Jean-Antoine Houdon (essayimageadditional resources 12)
  7. Self-Portrait, Elisabeth Louise Vigée-LeBrun (essayimageadditional resources)
  8. Y no hai remedio (And There’s Nothing to Be Done), from Los Desastres de la Guerra (The Disasters of War), plate 15, Francesco de Goya (essayimagesadditional resources)
  9. La Grande Odalisque, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  10. Liberty Leading the People, Eugène Delacroix (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  11. View from Mount Holyoke, Northampton, Massachusetts, after a Thunderstorm—The Oxbow, Thomas Cole (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  12. Still Life in Studio, Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre (essayimageadditional resources)
  13. Slave Ship (Slavers Throwing Overboard the Dead and Dying, Typhoon Coming On), Joseph Mallord William Turner (videoimagesadditional resources)
  14. Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament), Charles Barry, A.W.N. Pugin (videoimagesadditional resources)
  15. The Stonebreakers, Gustave Courbet (essayimageadditional resources 12)
  16. Nadar elevating Photography to Art, Honoré Daumier (essayimageadditional resources)
  17. Olympia, Édouard Manet (videoimageadditional resources)
  18. The Saint-Lazare Station, Claude Monet (essay and videoimageadditional resources)
  19. The Horse in Motion, Eadweard Muybridge (essayimageadditional resources)
  20. The Valley of Mexico from the Hillside of Santa Isabel, José María Velasco (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  21. The Burghers of Calais, Auguste Rodin (essayimage3D imageadditional resources)
  22. The Starry Night, Vincent van Gogh (essayimageadditional resources)
  23. The Coiffure, Mary Cassatt (essayimageadditional resources)
  24. The Scream, Edvard Munch (essayimageadditional resources)
  25. Where do we come from? What are we? Where are we going?, Paul Gauguin (essayimagesadditional resources)
  26. Carson, Pirie, Scott and Company Building, Louis Sullivan (essayimagesadditional resources)
  27. Mont Sainte-Victoire, Paul Cézanne (videoessayimageadditional resources)
  28. Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, Pablo Picasso (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  29. The Steerage, Alfred Stieglitz (essayimageadditional resources)
  30. The Kiss, Gustav Klimt (videoimageadditional resources)
  31. The Kiss, Constantin Brancusi (videoimages, additional resources)
  32. The Portuguese, Georges Braque (essayimagesadditional resources)
  33. The Goldfish, Henri Matisse (essayimageadditional resources)
  34. Improvisation 28 (second version), Vasily Kandinsky (videophoto,additional resources)
  35. Self-Portrait as a Soldier, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (essayimageadditional resources)
  36. Memorial Sheet of Karl Liebknecht, Käthe Kollwitz (essayimageadditional resources)
  37. Villa Savoye, Le Corbusier (essayimagesadditional resources)
  38. Composition with Red, Blue and Yellow, Piet Mondrian (essayimageadditional resources)
  39. Illustration from The Results of the First Five-Year Plan, Varvara Stepanova (essayimageadditional resources)
  40. Object (Le Déjeuner en fourrure), Meret Oppenheim (essayquizimageadditionalresources)
  41. Fallingwater, Frank Lloyd Wright (essayplans and elevationsimagesadditional resources)
  42. The Two Fridas, Frida Kahlo (essayimageadditional resources)
  43. The Migration of the Negro, Panel no. 49, Jacob Lawrence (video-short version, video-long version, photoadditional resources)
  44. The Jungle, Wilfredo Lam (essayimageadditional resources)
  45. Dream of a Sunday Afternoon in Alameda Central Park, Diego Rivera (essayimageadditional resources)
  46. Fountain, Marcel Duchamp (videoimagesadditional resources)
  47. Woman I, Willem de Kooning (videoimagesadditional resources)
  48. Seagram Building, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Philip Johnson (videoimagesadditional resources)
  49. Marilyn Diptych, Andy Warhol (essayimageadditional resources)
  50. Narcissus garden, Yayoi Kusama (essayimageadditional resources)
  51. The Bay, Helen Frankenthaler (essayquizimageadditional resources)
  52. Lipstick (Ascending) on Caterpillar Tracks, Claes Oldenburg (essayphotoadditional resources)
  53. Spiral Jetty, Robert Smithson (video and essayimagesadditional resources)
  54. House in New Castle County, Robert Ventura, John Rausch and Denise Scott Brown(essayphotosadditional resources)

Content Area 5
Indigenous Americas
1000 B.C.E.-1980 C.E.

  1. Chavín de Huántar (essayimageadditional resources)
  2. Mesa Verde Cliff Dwellings (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  3. Yaxchilán lintel 25, structure 23 (essayessay on related lintelimagesadditional resources)
  4. Great Serpent Mound (essayimagesadditional resources)
  5. Templo Mayor, Main Aztec temple (video and essayimagesadditional resources)
    a. The Coyolxauhqui Stone (videoimagesadditional resources)
    b. Calendar stone (videoimageadditional resources)
    c. Olmec-style mask (videoimagesadditional resources)
  6. Ruler’s feather headdress (probably of Moctezuma II) (videoimagesadditional resources–see page 12)
  7. City of Cusco (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  8. Maize cobs (essayimagesadditional resources 1, 2)
  9. City of Machu Picchu (essayvideophotosadditional resources)
  10. All-T’oqapu Tunic (essayphotoadditional resources)
  11. Bandolier Bag (essayphotoadditional resources)
  12. Transformation mask (essayimageadditional resources)
  13. Painted elk hide, attributed to Cotsiogo (Cadzi Cody) (essayimageadditional resources)
  14. Black-on-black ceramic vessel, Maria Martínez and Julian Martínez (essayimageadditional resources)

Content Area 6
1100-1980 C.E.

  1. Conical tower and circular wall of Great Zimbabwe (essayvideoimagesadditionalresources)
  2. Great Mosque of Djenné (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  3. Wall plaque, from Oba’s palace (essayimagesadditional resources)
  4. Sika dwa kofi (Golden Stool) (videoimageadditional resources)
  5. Ndop (portrait figure) of King Mishe miShyaang maMbul (essayimageadditional resources)
  6. Nkisi n’kondi (essayimageadditional resources)
  7. Female (Pwo) Mask (videoimagesadditional resources)
  8. Portrait mask (Mblo(essayimageadditional resources)
  9. Bundu mask (videoimageadditional resources)
  10. Ikenga (shrine figure) (videoimageadditional resources)
  11. Lukasa (memory board) (essayimageadditional resources)
  12. Aka elephant mask (videoimagesadditional resources)
  13. Reliquary figure (byeri) (videoimagesadditional resources)
  14. Veranda post of enthroned king and senior wife (Opo Ogoga) (related videoimage 1image 2additional resources)

Content Area 7
West and Central Asia
500 B.C.E.-1980 C.E.

  1. Petra, Jordan: Treasury and Great Temple (additional resources)
    a. Nabataeans introduction (essay)
    b. Petra and The Treasury (essayimages)
    c. Petra and the Great Temple (essayimages)
    d. UNESCO Siq project (video)
  2. Buddha, Bamiyan (essayimagevideoadditional resources 12)
  3. The Kaaba (essayimagesadditional resources)
  4. Jowo Rinpoche, enshrined in the Jokhang Temple (essayimagesadditional resources)
  5. Dome of the Rock (essayimagesadditional resources)
  6. Great Mosque (Masjid-e Jameh), Isfahan (essayimagesadditional resources)
  7. Folio from a Qur’an (essayimageadditional resources)
  8. Basin (Baptistère de Saint Louis), Mohammed ibn al-Zain (videoimagesadditional resources)
  9. Bahram Gur Fights the Karg, folio from the Great Il-Khanid Shahnama (essayimagesadditional resources)
  10. The Court of Gayumars, folio from Shah Tahmasp’s Shahnama (essayimagesadditional resources)
  11. The Ardabil Carpet (essayimagesadditional resources)

Content Area 8
South, East and Southeast Asia
300 B.C.E.-1980 C.E.

  1. Great Stupa at Sanchi (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  2. Terracotta warriors from mausoleum of the first Qin emperor of China (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  3. Funeral banner of Lady Dai (Xin Zhui) (essayimagesadditional resources)
  4. Longmen caves (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  5. Gold and jade crown (essayimageadditional resources)
  6. Todai-ji (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  7. Borobudur (essayimagesadditional resources)
  8. Angkor, the temple of Angkor Wat, the city of Angkor Thom, Cambodia (essayvideoimagesadditional resources)
  9. Lakshmana Temple (essayimagesadditional resources)
  10. Travelers among Mountains and Streams, Fan Kuan (essayimageadditional resources)
  11. Shiva as Lord of Dance (Nataraja) (essayimageadditional resources)
  12. Night Attack on the Sanjô Palace (essayimagesadditional resources)
  13. The David Vases (videoimagesadditional resources 12)
  14. Portrait of Sin Sukju (essayimageadditional resources)
  15. Forbidden City (video/essayimagesadditional resources)
  16. Ryoan-ji (video/essayimagesadditional resources 12)
  17. Jahangir Preferring a Sufi Shaikh to Kings, Bichitr (essayimageadditional resources)
  18. Taj Mahal (essayimagesadditional resources)
  19. White and Red Plum Blossoms, Ogata Korin (essayimageadditional resources 123)
  20. Under the Wave off Kanagawa (Kanagawa oki nami ura), also known as The Great Wave, from the series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji, Katsushika Hokusai (essayimageadditional resources)
  21. Chairman Mao en Route to Anyuan (essayimageadditional resources)

Content Area 9
The Pacific
700-1980 C.E.

  1. Nan Madol
  2. Moai on platform (ahu) (videoessayimagesadditional resources 123)
  3. ‘Ahu ‘ula (feather cape) (essayimageadditional resources)
  4. Staff god (essayimagesadditional resources)
  5. Female deity from Nukuoro (essayimagesadditional resources 12, 3)
  6. Buk mask (videoimagesadditional resources)
  7. Hiapo (tapa) (essayimageadditional resources)
  8. Tamati waka Nene, Gottfried Lindauer (essayimageadditional resources)
  9. Navigation chart (videoessayimageadditional resources)
  10. Malangan display and mask (essayimage 12additional resources)
  11. Presentation of Fijian mats and tapas cloths to Queen Elizabeth II (essayimageadditional resources 12)

Content Area 10
Global Contemporary
1980 C.E. to present

  1. The Gates, Christo and Jeanne-Claude (essayimagesadditional resources)
  2. Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Maya Lin (videoimagesadditional resources)
  3. Horn Players, Jean-Michel Basquiat (essayimageadditional resources)
  4. Summer Trees, Song Su-nam (essayimageadditional resources)
  5. Androgyne III, Magdalena Abakanowicz (essayimagesadditional resources)
  6. A Book from the Sky, Xu Bing (videoimagesadditional resources)
  7. Pink Panther, Jeff Koons (essayimagesadditional resources)
  8. Untitled (#228), from the History Portraits series, Cindy Sherman (essayimageadditional resources)
  9. Dancing at the Louvre, from the series, The French Collection, part 1; #1, Faith Ringgold(essayimageadditional resources)
  10. Trade (Gifts for Trading Land with White People), Jaune Quick-to-See Smith (essayimageadditional resources)
  11. Earth’s Creation, Emily Kame Kngwarreye (essayimageadditional resources)
  12. Rebellious Silence, from the Women of Allah series, Shirin Neshat (artist); photo by Cynthia Preston (essayimageadditional resources)
  13. En la Barberia no se Llora (No Crying Allowed in the Barbershop), Pepon Osorio (essayimage 12additional resources)
  14. Pisupo Lua Afe (Corned Beef 2000), Michel Tuffery (essayvideo 1imagesadditional resources)
  15. Electronic Superhighway, Nam June Paik (essayimageadditional resources)
  16. The Crossing, Bill Viola (essayimageadditional resources)
  17. Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Frank Gehry (essayimagesadditional resources)
  18. Pure Land, Mariko Mori (essayimageadditional resources)
  19. Lying with the Wolf, Kiki Smith (essayimageadditional resources)
  20. Darkytown Rebellion, Kara Walker (essayimageadditional resources)
  21. The Swing (After Fragonard), Yinka Shonibare (essayimagesadditional resources)
  22. Old Man’s Cloth, El Anatsui (videoessayimage, additional resources)
  23. Stadia II, Julie Mehretu (essayimageadditional resources)
  24. Preying Mantra, Wangechi Mutu (essayimageadditional resources)
  25. Shibboleth, Doris Salcedo (essayimagesadditional resources)
  26. MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts, Zaha Hadid (videoimages, additional resources)
  27. Kui Hua Zi (Sunflower Seeds), Ai Weiwei (video/essayimagesadditional resources)