" This new series has much to commend it. It shows a keen awareness of recent artistic and critical developments, and it establishes a balance between setting the historical framework and analyzing themes and issues. These books, individually and as a group, provide an unusually coherent and comprehensive survey of the complex phenomenon of modern art over the whole course of the twentieth century." -- Alex Potts, University of Michigan
Themes in Contemporary Art discusses the art of the final third of the twentieth century. In seven related chapters, it looks at different aspects of the postmodernism that has dominated art since the 1960s. The first chapter offers a broad introduction to the art and theories of the period. The next three chapters examine the effect of the legacy of Conceptual Art on the idea of the 'aesthetic', which has dominated previous modernist art, on painting itself and on photography. The fifth chapter discusses the emergence of various types of installation, performance and video art. The last two chapters look at the consequences of new thinking about gender and identity and the phenomenon of cultural globalisation for the contemporary practice of art. Themes in Contemporary Art is the final volume in a series of four books about twentieth-century art. Each book can be read independently and is accessible to the general reader. However, as a series they form the main texts of an Open University third-level course, Art of the Twentieth Century, which examines the fundamental changes that took place in the concepts and practices of art during the twentieth century.
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