Course detail

Theory of contemporary art

FaVU-3TESUAcad. year: 2020/2021

After the disintegration of modernism as the determining direction of the development of art, the history and the theory of contemporary art have been in the last quarter of the last century as a chaotic splendor of various tendencies, sometimes not precisely referred to as postmodernism. The subject of Theory of Contemporary Fine Arts follows the events on the world art scene at present.

Learning outcomes of the course unit

Written reflection of the given texts, seminar discussion.




Not applicable.

Recommended optional programme components

Not applicable.

Recommended or required reading

Peter BÜRGER, Teorie avantgardy. Stárnutí moderny. Praha: VVP AVU, 2015. (CS)
Denis CIPORANOV – Tomáš KULKA (eds.), Co je umění? Texty angloamerické estetiky 20. století. Praha: Pavel Mervart, 2010. (CS)
Karel CÍSAŘ (ed.), Co je to fotografie? Praha: Hermann a synové, 2004. (CS)
Marta FILIPOVÁ – Thomas RAMPLEY (ed.), Možnosti vizuálních studií. Brno: MU a Barrister & Principal, 2007. (CS)
Hal FOSTER a kol., Umění po roce 1900. Praha: Slovart, 2007. (4 úvodní kapitoly) (CS)
Ladislav KESNER, Vizuální teorie. Jinočany: H&H, 2005. (CS)
Konrad Paul LIESSMANN, Filozofie moderního umění. Olomouc: Votobia, 2000. (CS)
Jean-Francois LYOTARD, O postmodernismu: Postmoderno vysvětlované dětem: Postmoderní situace. Praha: Filosofia, 1993. (CS)
Martina PACHMANOVÁ (ed.), Neviditelná žena. Praha: One Woman Press, 2002. (CS)
Mario PERNIOLA, Estetika 20. století. Praha, Karolinum, 2000. (CS)
Miroslav PETŘÍČEK, Myšlení obrazem. Praha: Hermann a synové, 2009. (CS)
Tomáš POSPISZYL, Před obrazem. Praha: OSVU, 1998. (CS)
Tomáš POSPISZYL, Srovnávací studie. Praha: Fra, 2005. (CS)
Jiří ŠEVČÍK – Pavlína MORGANOVÁ – Terezie NEKVINDOVÁ – Dagmar SVATOŠOVÁ (eds.), České umění 1980–2010. Texty a dokumenty. Praha: VVP AVU, 2011. (CS)
Sešit pro umění, teorii a příbuzné zóny. (CS)

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

Individual and group consultations, lectures.

Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes

Doctoral exam.

Language of instruction


Work placements

Not applicable.

Course curriculum

1) Modernism and its theory in the second half of the 20th century. Reference and texts: Clement Greenberg and his pupils
2) Art and social subversion, Fluxus, SI. Reference and texts: Guy Debord
3) Minimalism and Pop Art, the art of 20th century art audiences. Leo Steinberg. Report and lyrics: Andy Warhol and Donald Judd
4) Dematerialization of art and new approaches to traditional artistic genres. Reference and texts: Allan Kaprow
5) Theory of Postmodernism. Reference and texts: Michel Foucault: Who is the author?
6) Intermedia, new media and contemporary theory of photographic and digital images. Reference and texts: Lev Manovich
7) Locally specific art and installation. Report and lyrics: Miwon Kwon, One Place After Another: Notes on Site Specificity
8) Postmodernism and periphery. References and texts: Edward Said and Boris Groys
9) Attempts to revise modernist attitudes, art and politics. Reference and texts: October magazine and its author's circle - a new synthesis of 20th-century art history
10) Postproduction and renewal of interest in artistic strategies of the 60s and 70s. Reference and texts: Nicolas Bourriaud


Learning outcomes of the course unit The aim of the course is to give an overview of art theories of the last forty years, to acquaint students with basic texts of art theory of the period and to teach students to apply this knowledge both in their own writing about contemporary art and in their own creative work.

Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences

Mandatory lectures and tutorials.

Classification of course in study plans

  • Programme VUD Doctoral

    branch VUUP_DK3 , 2. year of study, summer semester, 0 credits, compulsory

  • Programme VUD Doctoral

    branch VUUP_DP4 , 2. year of study, summer semester, 0 credits, compulsory

  • Programme VUD Doctoral

    branch VUUP_DK4 , 2. year of study, summer semester, 0 credits, compulsory

Type of course unit



6 hours, compulsory

Teacher / Lecturer

Guided consultation

6 hours, compulsory

Teacher / Lecturer