France: Paris! (for art lovers)

France: Paris (for art lovers)




January 9 - January 21, 2021  

Program Description 

In Paris the well-prepared traveler steps into a cultural universe that has been lovingly created by some of the greatest artists and patrons in history. The city of light still sparkles with the artistic vibrancy of the nineteenth century. Are you ready to explore the beauty and poetry in works by Delacroix, Monet, Van Gogh and other perceptive painters who lived through this turbulent age of creative friction and political upheaval? In this Paris FLP, you will relive historical and cultural events from the French Revolution to the Belle Époque in the city where they took place.

In the world-renowned museums of the Louvre and the Orsay you will go on treasure hunts and conduct celebrity interviews with VIP’s (Very Important Paintings).  

From your home base in the beautiful Marais, at a stone’s throw from the Seine and Notre Dame, you will visit the studios of 19th century artists, as well as a host of museums large and small in all quarters of the city, studying architectural jewels along the way. You will make an excursion to the country retreat of Napoleon and Josephine, enjoy gourmet dinners and learn how to bake croissants. In other words, you will master the art of “savoir vivre” (knowing how to live well).


ARTH 190A Art of the Nineteenth Century (3 units)

Throughout the 19th century, Paris was the center of the art world. The Paris of the tree-lined boulevards, which invite leisurely strolling, is a 19th century creation. What better way to study the history and beauty of the city of light than by the lived experience of its art and architectural monuments? 

Short illustrated lectures will familiarize the students with the popular visual culture, literary movements and political trends of 19th century France; introduce them to the great artists’ personalities of the time; and prepare them for a direct and stimulating interaction with the works of art that shaped French identity. The course will cover stylistic movements from Neo-classicism through Post-Impressionism, as created by artists such as David, Delacroix, Courbet, Manet, Degas, Monet, Morisot, Cezanne, Van Gogh and Gauguin. 




Program Leader: Josine Smits

Dr. Josine Eikelenboom Smits has taught surveys of Western art as well as upper division and graduate level courses in eighteenth and nineteenth century art history at California College of the Arts, Stanford University, UC Berkeley Extension and SJSU. 

She received a Master's degree in Art History from the Sorbonne (Paris IV). During her 4 years as a student in Paris, she came to know and love every aspect of the city.  An internship at the Musée d’Orsay gave her an inside view into the French museum world. She earned an M.A and Ph.D from Stanford University for a dissertation on the nineteenth century French landscape painter Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, on whom she has lectured at the Louvre. In her research and writing she continues to illuminate Corot’s oeuvre in the broader cultural and philosophical context of Romanticism. She developed a second specialty as a research scholar at Tokyo University, where she studied the influence of Japanese woodblock prints (Ukiyo-e) on Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, and the art of Van Gogh. She has lectured on the aspect of Japonisme in Van Gogh’s work at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.





It is important to note that each program's total cost will vary depending on the location and the package it offers.  

$750 SJSU Special Session Tuition ($250 per unit)
$200 Administrative Fee 
$2,585 Program fees, lodging, class materials and class related tours approximately*
$3,535  Total Program Cost


* Airfare is not included. Students will need approximately $250-$300 for additional expenses.




Check out these additional resources for your program.

  • Itinerary
  • Info sessions
    • April 14, 2020 at 4:30pm in room ART135
    • April 21, 2020 at 4:30pm in room ART135
    • April 28, 2020 at 4:30pm in room ART135
    • May 5, 2020 at 4:30pm in room ART135