Art and Globalization



  • Arrival Date:  July 30, 2023 End Date: August 19, 2023
    • Remote reading week: July 24 - July 30
    • Prague: July 30 - August 3 
    • Berlin : August 4 - August 6
    • Artmill: August 7 - August 19

In this immersive studio art class, students create site-responsive sculptures, drawings, performances, and installations that explore art in a global context. Using the rich history and culture of Central Europe as site and locale, the class will travel to contemporary art museums, cultural and historical sites in Prague and Berlin (1 week), then create responsive artworks on-site at ArtMill’s Center for Sustainability, in the Bohemian countryside, Czech Republic (2 weeks). Studio assignments, lectures, conceptual, fabrication practices, and critique will be led by UCSC Professor Dee Hibbert-Jones; artist and writer Barbara Benish, Director of ArtMill, as well as visiting faculty and professional artists from the Czech Republic. Students will create original artworks that explore the complex relationship between object-making, place-making, aesthetics, and cultural identity in a global context through four themed projects with a strong emphasis on art and sustainability. Working with found objects on-site, performance, photography and new media students will create site-responsive work. There will be a final exhibition on-site and open to the public. Our themed topics are:

  • Global (im)mobility free markets, art fairs, non-places (Orientation, travel to museums, galleries, artist studios in Prague & Berlin)
  • Appropriation: found objects, borrowed cultures, local origins, Americanization (Orientation at ArtMill Center & Studios)
  • Participation Networks: participation, cooperation, local/ global relationships (Participatory artwork in public space: Prague, Bohemia, ArtMill Center)
  • Wastelands: global environmental impacts and ecologies (Site-specific environmental projects ArtMill Center)

Upcoming Online Info Session: Tuesday, February 14th from 4:00 - 5:00 - Register Here

Language of Instruction: English 

Course(s): Art 186 Art and Globalization (6 units)

Max Enrollment: 14

Faculty Leader: Dee Hibbert - Jones (she, her, hers), Art Professor



Quick Facts

Locations - This program will visit the cities of Berlin and Prague, then retreat to the rural Czech countryside where Artmill Center for Sustainability is located. 

Minimum GPA - 2.5 cumulative GPA or higher at the time of application and every quarter prior to departure

Prerequisites and Application Requirements 

  • Portfolio: 4 images of artwork

  • Short statement:  Paragraph sharing interest in art in a global context and prior knowledge of art-making.

  • Meeting: There is also a required meeting with Professor Hibbert-Jones prior to being accepted into the program. 

  • Signed Financial Terms and Conditions Document: As part of the application, you will be required to upload an electronically signed Financial Terms and Conditions document. 
  • Passport: A passport valid for at least six months after the program’s end date is required to apply.

Eligibility - Good academic and disciplinary standing, Min Age: 18, 45 units completed at time of departure, Art Major or Minor. If you are not an Art Major or Minor but have an art background, you could gain special permission to participate. 

Students from other colleges and universities: You are welcome to apply! If you use financial aid, please check in with your home financial aid office to see if they can package you for our program. Students will pay the same fees as UCSC students, but will be required to pay an additional $50 for registration in the UCSC Summer Session courses associated with the program. 


Prague, Czech Republic:

  • Visit the National Gallery of Contemporary Art for an overview of European trends in art housed in the revolutionary architecture of Veletrzni Palace, one of the icons of early Functionalist architecture. 
  • Studio visits with top Czech Artists such as Ivan Kafka 
  • Visit American architect Frank Ghery’s “Fred & Ginger” Building in Prague’s historic river-front Baroque neighborhood; Walking tour with architecture expert and critic Dr. Jana Ticha to the Zizkov district, home of Bohemian Prague’s historic working-class neighborhood and today’s alternative art scene. Dr. Ticha was editor of the nation’s top architectural magazine and is now Professor at the Architecture Academy. 
  • Walking tour along Vltava River to view ArtWall, (founded by Barbara Benish in the late 1990s) and the Center for Contemporary Art, Prague. It is the country’s most widely viewed public art space. Q and A with the artist: How political is Public Art? What is the impact on the local of the global how to access and reach “the public”.
  • Walk to Narodni Divadlo/National Theatre for a behind-the-scenes tour with award-winning Scenographer Jana Prekova. Guided discussion on the “Velvet Revolution” (1989) and how artists contributed to political change (Narodni street), with NYU teacher and former dissident Jan Urban (Voice of America). Students prepare a discussion on nationalism, democracy, and the power of the people to influence. Global relationships, labor, and mobilizing the image.
  • Visit Museum Kampa to visit one of the largest collections of F. Kupka in Europe and the most comprehensive Central European contemporary art collection. Discussion on nationalism, democracy, and social change. Global relationships, labor, and mobilizing the image.The topic for students: Inter-war creative expressions, end of Colonial (Hapsburg) rule and the establishment of 1st Republic (Czechoslovakia), how the arts reflected the new democracies of Europe. Global relationships, labor, and mobilizing the image cont.
  • Visit Museum of Technology, documenting the rise of design in pre-WWII Czechoslovakia when the country was the 3rd largest industrial nation in Europe. Tour and discussion with some of the top Czech Contemporary Designers. Topic: cross-currents of inter-war Czechoslovakia and today’s art scene? The power of the object, readymade vs. mass production. Global regulations and the power of the internet.

Berlin, Germany

  • Neue Nationalgalerie, the New National Gallery housing modern art in the iconic building by Mies van der Rohe (1968). Tour with local artists and walking tour of galleries in the bustling district of Kreuzberg and Sammlung Boros, in a massive former World War II bunker in the heart of Berlin….works by internationally renowned artists to be discussed by students on site. Discussion of cultural appropriation and the influence of ubiquitous US culture on the world.


  • Students become liable for the program cost after the withdrawal deadline of March 14, 2023. To withdraw, they must fill out the Request to Withdraw Form.

Application Fee

  • There is a Non-Refundable $200 UCSC Global Learning Application Fee. It is charged to your UCSC account after March 1, 2023. 


Country and Host Organization

The Czech Republic is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west, Austria to the south, Slovakia to the east, and Poland to the northeast.  

ArtMill is a center for sustainable living and art located in the middle of nowhere halfway between Prague and Munich. The Mill is located on a lake in a rural region bordering one of the oldest greenbelts in Europe, the Sumava National Park. Facilities include working student studios in a converted Mill, a woodshop, sculpture garden, and nearby lake. The farm buildings, barn studio, library, and kitchens allow space to create and exhibit. Art Mill includes living areas, two kitchens, workspaces, and on-site activities (students will live off-site and walk to Art Mill to create artwork.) The center is focused on sustainable living and art-making. There is a photography darkroom, woodshop, access to metal facilities, high-speed internet, printer, and library. Students who wish to work in digital photography should bring a camera. All students should bring a computer for reading responses.

Weather and Climate

For the in-country course period (June 20th - July 5th) and locations, expect warm temperatures (86F day, 70F night) and periodic rain.

Travel Documents Required for US Citizens

Passport required for US citizens. If you are not a US citizen please email to learn about additional travel documents you may need to pursue this program.


Koruna (Czech Republic)

Official Language(s)

Czech 95.4%, Slovak 1.6%

In Prague, Berlin and at ArtMill we will stay in pensions. Most bathrooms in Prague are still gendered, but that is changing. Berlin is more progressive than the Czech Republic in this one capacity. Professor Hibbert-Jones or one of ArtMill's staff will be in the same hotel as students. At ArtMill students stay at local hotel accommodations a short walk from the Mill. Students walk to/from ArtMill each morning. Hotels are clean, modern, and have all the amenities necessary (hot showers, clean linens, clean standards in general and comfortable beds) ArtMill has a Registered Nurse available 24/7, per Czech law. Students should be prepared to spend time in the outdoors in a rural location.

Please note that elevators, air conditioners, and other modern conveniences may not be available in all locations. Students will be spending time on a farm, in the outdoors, complete with animals and a fire to gather around regularly.


Students will eat meals “out-of-pocket” in Prague and Berlin. All meals at the ArtMill will be covered in the overall Program Cost. ArtMill has an organic garden that supplies the kitchen with a selection of seasonal foods servicing students, artists-in-residence, and ArtMill staff. 


Please note- this class includes walking tours in museums and cities. All facilities at ArtMill (barn gallery, studios, library, etc.) have wheelchair accessibility, except for the mill itself, which is 4 stories high. However many European subways are limited in accessibility, with stairs rather than elevators. Housing accommodations have access, per Czech law. The site visits in Prague and Berlin may have limited access. These can be worked out ahead of time with proper advance notice. Please email with any questions, and view our resources here.

Students with Disabilities

If you need support services abroad, notify your UCSC Disability Resource Center (DRC) Coordinator

Identities Abroad and Away

UC Santa Cruz Global Learning is committed to inclusion and equity in our various program options as well as striving to make everyone’s experiences abroad enriching, positive, and safe.

Learn more on our Identities Abroad and Away webpage.


Course Description

Art 186 Art and Globalization  (6 units)

Fulfills the following UCSC requirements: Upper division Studio Art Course For Art Majors/Minors AND the CC GE

Course Objectives:

  • Understand new perspectives on global issues and art-making
    •  Build a global vocabulary for creation, critique and analysis of contemporary art
    • Articulate complex visual ideas, technically, metaphorically and allegorically
    •  Learn strategies/techniques/creative approaches to making sculpture on-site
    •  Explore ways place, context & audience play a role in what artists make
    • Learn to structure studio time with teacher critiques, lectures, and site visits       

International education learning objectives

  • Experience firsthand a historical axis of globalization between East and West
  • Expose students to artwork, artists and faculty from new cultures and contexts
  • Develop independent/collaborative work and function in an international environment
  • Build intercultural competency in an experiential learning environment both local and global
  • Exhibit completed works for a local, foreign community which reflects a global context 

Syllabus Coming Soon

Course Credit

Students on UCSC Global Seminars earn regular UC Santa Cruz course credit which may be used to fulfill degree, major, minor, General Education (GE) requirements. UC Santa Cruz students can use UCSC Global Seminar courses to fulfill their academic requirements as listed in the General Catalog. Students from other campuses should consult with the academic advisors from their home campuses to determine whether courses taken on our programs may be used to fulfill their specific academic requirements.