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Offering a unique thematic approach to recent art history,Themes of Contemporary Art: Visual Art after 1980, Third Edition, focuses on eight central ideas recurring in art over the past few decades: identity, the body, time, memory, place, language, science, and spirituality. Featuring 160 vivid illustrations (23 in color and 137 in black and white), this wide-ranging introduction presents artworks that exemplify a wide variety of materials, techniques, theoretical viewpoints, and stylistic approaches, by artists from diverse ethnic, cultural, and geographic backgrounds. Concise, engaging, and accessible, this thought-provoking volume challenges readers to think actively and critically about the ideas expressed in contemporary art. New to this Edition * Updated throughoutwith the most recent scholarship, research, and developments in the field * A new chapter on memoryas a theme in contemporary art and culture * An updated timelinethat reflects world events and developments in art and pop culture through today * 3 new artist profiles * 31 additional illustrations
Jean Robertson is Professor of Art History at Herron School of Art and Design, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.
Craig McDaniel is Associate Dean and Director of Graduate Programs at Herron School of Art and Design, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.
Table of Contents
Preface Introduction Themes of Contemporary Art: What, Why, and How A Brief Orientation
Chapter One: The Art World Expands Overview of History and Art History, 1980-2011 Traditions Survive, New Trends Arrive A Spectrum of Voices Emerges Globalization Theory Flexes Its Muscles Social Experience as Art Art Meets Contemporary Culture
Chapter Two: Identity Identity in Art History Identity is Communal or Relational Identity Politics --- Essentialism --- Diversity --- Hybridity Identity Is Constructed --- Otherness and Representation --- Deconstructing Difference --- The Fluidity of Identity Post Identity Profile: Nancy Burson Profile: Shirin Neshat
Chapter Three: The Body Past Figurative Art A New Spin on the Body --- The Body Is a Battleground --- The Body Is a Sign --- Performing Bodies They Body Beautiful Sexual Bodies --- The Gaze --- Sex and Violence Mortal Bodies Posthuman Bodies Profile: Reneé Cox Profile: Zhang Huan
Chapter Four: Time Changing Views of Time Time and Art History Time as a Medium --- Live Art --- Film and Video --- Process Art Exploring the Structure of Time --- Counting Time --- Measuring Time --- Reordering Time --- Expressing Endlessness Profile: Hiroshi Sugimoto Profile: Cornelia Parker
Chapter Five: Memory Memory and Art History The Texture of Memory --- Memory is Emotional --- Memory is Unreliable --- Memory is Multisensory Strategies for Representing the Past --- Displaying Evidence --- Reenacting the Past --- Fracturing Narratives and Reshuffling Memories Storehouses of Memory Revisiting the Past --- Recovering History --- Rethinking History --- Reframing the Present Commemorating the Past Profile: Christian Boltanski Profile: Brian Tolle
Chapter Six: Place Places Have Meanings Places Have Value History's Influence --- (Most) Places Exist in Space --- (Most) Works of Art Exist in a Place What's Public? What's Private? Dislocation Looking at Places Looking Out for Places Fictionalized Places Profile: Unilever Series at Tate Modern Profile: Andrea Zittel
Chapter Seven: Language Words with Art: A History Art with Words: A History Recent Theories of Language Reasons for Using Language Language Makes Meaning Language Takes Form --- Transparency and Translucency --- Spatiality and Physicality --- Books Made by Artists --- Art Made with Books Wielding the Power of Language Naming Confronting the Challenge of Translation Using Text in the Information Age Profile: Nina Katchadourian Profile: Janet Cardiff
Chapter Eight: Science What is Science? Artists as Amateur Scientists Artists Adopt Scientific Methods and Materials --- Creole Technologies --- BioArt The Ideology of Science --- Changing Paradigms of Science --- Is Science Running Amok? Activist Art Responds The Visual Culture of Science --- Scientific Imaging and Art --- Deconstructing the Visual Culture of Science --- Scientific Displays and Archives --- Science in Popular Culture Classifying Humans in the Genomic Age Is Nature Natural? Marveling at the Universe Profile: Patricia Piccinini Profile: Eduardo Kac
Chapter Nine: Spirituality Spirituality and Religion A Short History A Few Strategies --- Manipulating Forms, Materials, and Processes --- Manipulating Meanings and Minds Finding Faith and Harboring Doubt Expressing Religious Identities Facing Death, Doom, and Destruction Mingling the Sacred and the Secular Profile: José Bedia Profile: Bill Viola