Clemente Marconi

This professor has earned a CULPA silver nugget

Dec 2005

This guy is a complete jerk off. The class consists of labeled slides and his explanation of what, where, when, without the how and why. Memorization is key to this class. He doesn't want to know the "how" or "why" with his students. Also, don't go to his office hours. He will not give you any of his time, or if he does, he won't give you any worthwhile advice. He's awful. If you think going through a bunch of slides that basically tells dates, cultural eras, and labels, then this is class is definitely for you.

Dec 2005

I didn't realize it until I was doing research for his paper, but Marconi is one of the preeminent scholars in his field, and the amount of material that the guy has published is ridiculous. Needless to say, he knows everything that there is to know about Greek Art. I found the class very interesting for the most part, except that the nature of Greek Art causes its study to sound a little bit repetitive sometimes -- subject matter and medium experience only subtle changes throughout hundreds of years. However, Marconi does a decent job at keeping your interest -- he has a quirky personality and, though his accent takes some ear training to understand, he's fun to listen to. He constantly makes jokes about himself which will entertain and sometimes shock the class. Marconi is very thorough with his explanations and with visual and contextual analysis. He is also very organized in his presentation of material -- his slides are always labeled, and he'll show you the location on a map of the region before talking about its context, etc. He's also very good about making a balance between the different art forms of the time -- vase painting, urban plan, architecture, etc. In general, a very good professor, though the material might get a bit redundant at times.

Dec 2005

Prof. Marconi is likely to be one of the best teachers in the entire art history department at Columbia. He knows just about everything that has to do with Greek Art, and is effective at conveying all the information to students in an organized and systematic way. He definitely takes his field seriously, but he likes to make lots of jokes in class to set a friendly and fun learning environment. Overall a good course to take. Facts are very well presented, and historical context is easy to follow. Also, it seems that some previous reviewers have suggested that you need to do a lot of reading, but I don't think that's the case. As long as you pay attention in class and take good notes, you should never actually have to open the required texts, except to supplement your own notes. This will only happen if 1) you weren't paying attention in the first place or 2) he didn't talk about it enough. Seriously, my point is, take good notes. I paid about $20 dollars for 'Art in the Hellenistic Age' only to look at two pages in it. Prof. Marconi does a very very good job of presenting the information (especially in the latter half of the course) so if you really wanted to, just buy Pedley.

Dec 2005

I loved this man as an instructor. While his thick Italian accent takes a little getting used to at first, he knows the information backwards and forwards. He is witty and draws constant comparisons to earlier works in his lecture which comes in very handy on the final and the midterm, both of which aren't particularly hard, but certainly not easy. The final essay (8-10 pages) is leniently graded as long as you put in work. Prof. Marconi was relatively accessible, though the T.A.'s might be a better immediate resource. Overall, it was a wonderful class and I reccommend it, especially to art history majors.

Jan 2005

Wow, I couldn't believe my eyes after reading the reviews about how Prof. Marconi is open-minded, friendly, and accessible.. because.. he certainly WAS NOT to me! In fact, I'm jealous of them! Professor Marconi alotted 2 min. open-office hours with me. When I met him the third time about my troubles with the final paper, he verbally divulged a convoluted one sentence comment in a thick Italian accent: "ok. that izz nice. ok. I'll see you in class, goodbye", which was somewhat of an improvement over the previous "read Boardman, bye" and "just do you research, good day". After receiving my paper back, I got a back grade with merely one comment: "wrong culture and location". Ahh! Was it just me? From day one, those torturous meetings forced me to feel like I was not capable of help because I couldn't meet his standard, and at the end of it all, I never felt so stupid in my life. I never protested. Once again, I envy you. There are always exceptions to the rule. I guess he didn't like me?

Jan 2005

Professor Marconi was my best teacher. I had him for Greek art history and it was phenomenal. He's funny, witty, and very nice. His TA's are great. There are only 2 exams, midterm and final, with 5 id's, 1 or 2 comparisons, and a very very very open type essay. It's so general, you can write about anything. There's also a Met tour, around late November or December. I liked the class. If you want individual attention you can get it, but it's not really necessary.

Dec 2004

Prof. Marconi basically presents the materials through slides, which has it's good and bad points. If you are a visual person, you will enjoy the high-quality slides. However, the computer used to present the slides frequently goes haywire, ranging from a lost slide in the lecture to spending half the class trying to fix the computer. More often than not, he presents the material rapidly but will go into great detail on monuments that he is particularly knowledgeable about. Prof. Marconi's engaging and witty lectures make the seemingly static monuments come to life. Besides stating the aesthetic qualities of the piece, Marconi also brings in recent literary scholarship as another viewpoint on the readings. For the geographically challenged, he always presents a map and pinpoints the location of the city before he lectures on the particular pieces. In addition, he is also quite friendly outside of class and at office hours (although I wish he would extend it to more than 1hr./week.). All in all, it is a thoroughly rewarding class. Even if you are not interested in the aesthetics Greek Art, the political and social aspect of the monuments will draw you in.

Jan 2004

prof marconi is fantastic. his italian accent is very engaging and definitely intelligible. his passion for greek art helped me to stay interested during lectures. (i personally did not want to take a greek art class but initially took it to fulfill a requirement; of course now i would opt for any other class he teaches). his knowledge of greek art is indefinite.

Aug 2003

Best class I took at Columbia! Great professor.

Jun 2003

I feel awful criticizing Marconi, considering how nice he was both in and out of class, but his Greek Sculpture seminar was a disaster. He assigned five to six readings for each class, each of which was presented by a student who quickly delivered a summary of its major points, only to be succeeded by the next student who quickly delivered a summary of the major points of the next reading. The quantity of readings assigned precluded class discussion, except perhaps to answer a few question, and we were never able to get to all the readings assigned. As a result, the class fell further and further behind the syllabus, so no one really knew what readings were assigned for each class or when their presentations were due. In addition, those of us who had not taken Marconi's intro class were confused about terms and monuments throughout the course, and it was frustrating trying to keep up. There was also very little direction given on the final paper. On a more positive note, however, Marconi is (as stated before) very nice and incredibly knowledgable.

Apr 2003

Marconi knows everything, and I mean, everything about Greek Art. Sure, he's hard to understand at first, but you get used to it. He makes fun of it, himself. I've taken two classes with him and would take more. He really makes you love what might seem boring.

Dec 2002

I feel bad writing a negative review of him, because the guy is so nice. He loves the subject, he loves teaching, and he loves his students. He is one of the most available professors I have ever had. Unfortunately, his accent is his tragic flaw. His english isnt so hot, and he has one of the worst italian accents i have ever heard. It once took me half a class to realize he was talking about a cemetary. Because you just cant understand him, class drags on and on and is really painful to sit through.

Apr 2002

This course is a boring procession of dates, names, and places. The dullness of the course is reinforced by endless slides, and more endless names and dates. None of it is brought to life in the lectures. One doesn't get the sense of the history underlying the art that represented the periods - - it's all just a bunch of clay "jugs" that marked certain transitional periods. Moreover, one would never know that over the centuries that this art was being created there were the two Persian wars, the two Pelopnesian wars, Pericles's rebuilding of Athens, the trade wars, etc. It must have had some impact? Instead, Marconi's presentation is an absract monolgue of this color, that line, and this curve. Marconi is a nice guy. Sure he's got this terrible speech impediment, but after five weeks I became fluent in all his verbal curveballs. Ironically, a man so impassioned about his art has left this student totally and utterly bored.

Dec 2001

Many people were turned off by professor marconi's speech difficulties, but putting in the effort to understand him was well worth it. He knows what he's talking about; his class is well organized; he was very good about making himself available. Marconi is a sweet man and the class was highly enjoyable.

Nov 2001

This man is a genius. he knows everything there is to know about Greek Art and a hell of a lot about other fields in the discipline. He is committed and dedicated to his students (he has given class on days when he was unable to speak) and is always friendly and helpful during office hours and any other time. He's also incidentally the only professor I've seen actually doing research in the library.

Oct 2001

Marconi was jovial and friendly, but I thought he was a miserable professor. He didn't have a good enough command of English to describe anything properly, and since that's basically what art history is about, well, the class sucks. This is a subject that needs a lot of fleshing out - ancient civilization, lots of ruins - and he just isn't capable of it.

Jan 2000

Marconi's a lovable Italian, even if you can't understand him through his accent half the time. The lectures rarely transcend the basic name, date, and place format so typical of art history classes. Still, if you're interested, he's terribly friendly and willing to elucidate during office hours.