This course will both survey postmodern art in general, and will pursue a more focussed approach to a dominant theme of such art, the sublime. In this respect, we will concentrate on the writing of Lyotard. Once the issue of the sublime is raised, the question of the links to Romanticism automatically follows, and the course will investigate whether postmodern art should be considered fundamentally neo-Romantic, or whether it should stand as an independent, revolutionary category in itself. The relation of Modernism to neo-Romanticism will also be investigated, thus allowing for a consideration of Modernism and Postmodernism to each other. Other topics to be examined include the political values and claims of postmodern art and the status of the art-producer as artist-theoretician.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- question and evaluate the stronghold of modernist painting and the 'heroic' male artist in the last three decades of the twentieth century;
- expand their knowledge of postmodernist art and think critically about the changing role, meaning and purpose of art in rising global cultures, which will result from their engagement with diverse media ranging from photography, fashion, the moving image, collage and painting; and
- assess the rise of feminism in art practice, the appropriation of 'history' in imagery across media, the blurring of boundaries in disciplines, cultures and geographies, and the rising voice of minority groups excluded from the normalising definitions of art presented during the height of modernist era of the 1950s and early 1960s.
- 2,000 word tutorial paper (30) [LO 1,2,3]
- 3,000 word essay (50) [LO 1,2]
- Image test (20) [LO 2,3]
In response to COVID-19: Please note that Semester 2 Class Summary information (available under the classes tab) is as up to date as possible. Changes to Class Summaries not captured by this publication will be available to enrolled students via Wattle.
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130 hours of total student learning time made up from:
a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of tutorials; and
b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing. Contact hours may include visits to major art institutions in Canberra.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Benjamin, A, (ed), The Lyotard Reader, New York, 1989
Docherty, T, Postmodernism: A Reader, New York, 1993
Kristeva, J, The Powers of Horror, New York, 1982
Foster, Hal (ed), The Anti-Aesthetic : Essays on Postmodern Culture, Washington, 1983
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- 6 units
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