Summer 2016: The Greeks in Ancient Italy, June 1-June 22, 2016

The Applications Are In!!

Sixteen excited SUNY New Paltz students are preparing for the On-Site Studies in Art History Abroad, Summer 2016 Program: The Greeks in Ancient Italy, with Professor Keely Heuer!

On March 10, Professor Heuer conducted an academic orientation session for the group in the Art History Department’s classroom, Smiley Art Building, Room 118A. Epicurian delicacies of Sicily and southern Italy were provided, along with many handouts the students will need to write the papers for the course!

Program Information Session:
Tuesday, November 10, 7-9 PM in SAB118A

Contact: Prof. Keely Heuer, Art History
SAB 108J (845) 257-3829

The Motya Charioteer, 480-470 BCE

The Motya Charioteer, 480-470 BCE, from the Island of Mozia, Sicily


Discover an extraordinary side of sun-kissed Italy during this three-week summer adventure through Sicily, the Bay of Naples, and Rome, exploring the impact that the Greeks had upon ancient Italy. Your travels will include visits to once-powerful Greek settlements in southern Italy and Sicily, an island Phoenician city, excavations of famous Roman towns buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 A.D., and the best antiquities collections in Rome.

In a small group, students will learn first-hand about the art, architecture, and history of a major facet of the Greek world that is rarely discussed in the classroom. Explore a volcanic crater, walk inside a 2500 year-old temple, enjoy the perfect acoustics of an ancient theater, marvel over ancient “la dolce vita” in a Roman villa, indulge in gelato and sfogliatelle, and so much more!


This six-credit study abroad experience focuses upon the enormous impact of Greek art and architecture on the visual culture of the indigenous peoples of ancient Italy. Trade contacts between the Greeks and the various ancient populations of the Italian peninsula and Sicily date back to the Bronze Age, and the demand for Greek goods in exchange for valuable raw materials, such as metal ores, eventually enticed some Greek artisans to emigrate westwards and settle in Italic communities, where they continued to practice their trades. Often overlooked in these cross-cultural relationships is the significance of the permanent Greek settlements along the coastlines of southern Italy and Sicily, which were established starting in the eighth century B.C. In fact, this part of the Mediterranean world came to be known as Magna Graecia, or “Great Greece.” The art and architecture of these cities provided an important conduit for the spread of Greek culture and aesthetics to Rome, particularly during the Hellenistic era, but in surveys of Greek art, the brilliant achievements of the Greek settlers are nearly always overlooked in favor of focusing upon the products and monuments of the Greek mainland, particularly those of Athens. Through travels in Sicily, the Bay of Naples, and Rome, this course investigates the distinctive features of the art and architecture produced in various regions of Magna Graecia resulting from the accessible natural resources and the unique cultural needs and interests that developed from the interactions of Greeks and native Italic populations. Students will additionally explore the rich artistic legacy of southern Italy and Sicily by observing its technical and iconographic effects upon Etruscan and Roman art.


Paestum, Temple of Athena, c. 500 BCE

Paestum, Temple of Athena, c. 500 BCE

Wednesday, June 1st – Arrival in Catania
Thursday, June 2nd – Catania/Syracuse
Friday, June 3rd – Syracuse
Saturday, June 4th – Syracuse (free afternoon)
Sunday, June 5th – Morgantina/Piazza Armerina
Monday, June 6th – Agrigento
Tuesday, June 7th – Selinunte
Wednesday, June 8th – Mozia/Segesta
Thursday, June 9th – Palermo (free day)
Friday, June 10th – Palermo
Saturday, June 11th – Naples
Sunday, June 12th – Pompeii/Oplontis/Herculaneum
Monday, June 13th – Cumae/Pozzuoli
Tuesday, June 14th – Naples (free day)
Wednesday, June 15th – Paestum
Thursday, June 16th – Rome: walking tour
Friday, June 17th – Rome: Villa Giulia (afternoon free)
Saturday, June 18th – Rome: Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, Colosseum
Sunday, June 19th – Rome: Palazzo Massimo and Palazzo Altemps
Monday, June 20th – Rome (free day)
Tuesday, June 21st – Rome: Ara Pacis, Pantheon, Capitoline Museums
Wednesday, June 22nd – Departure from Rome

*Note that the schedule may be subject to adjustment.