From Warhol to Whiteread: Postmodernity & Visual Art Practice - HART5540

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2021 to 2022.


This module explores a range of neo-avant-garde and post-war art practice from the 1960s through to the contemporary; from the Minimalism & Pop Art of the 1960s through to the YBAs. It will introduce and discuss some of the key artistic figures within the period, exploring their practice, critical contexts and legacy in relation to theories of the modern and postmodern. Taking a thematic approach to one of the most innovative and stylistically diverse art historical periods, the module will consider a range of genres – painting, sculpture, installation, performance and land art – exploring how artists have re-defined and developed their practice in the cultural period following Modernism. Artists examined will include Andy Warhol, Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt, Eva Hesse, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Gilbert & George, Jenny Saville, Yinka Shonibare, Gerhard Richter and Rachel Whiteread.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 40
Private study hours: 260
Total Study hours: 300

Method of assessment

Gallery Evaluation 2,000-2500 words (35%)
Essay (c. 3000 words) (45%)
Seminar Reading Synopses (20%)

Indicative reading

Hopkins, David (2000), After Modern Art 1945-2000 (Oxford University Press)
Pooke, Grant (2010), Contemporary British Art: An Introduction (London: Routledge)
Stallabrass, Julian (2006), High Art Lite: The Rise & Fall of Brit Art (London: Verso)
Harrison, Charles and Wood, Paul (2003), Art in Theory 1900-2000 (Blackwell)

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module Level 5 students will be able to:

- evaluate concepts (and chronologies) of the Postmodern with particular reference to painting, installation, land art, sculpture and performance art practice from the post-war to the 1990s;
- identify, define and situate key terms within contemporary art theory and practice;
- describe influential and alternative approaches to ways of making and conceptualising art which have broadly characterised the Postmodern period;
- explore the demise of Modernism, and consider the plurality of art practice and theories which followed as a partial response to earlier visual and critical orthodoxies.
- evaluate and analyse the approaches to conceptualising postmodern art with reference to theoretical and critical paradigms identifying the underpinning assumptions;
- account for and situate the reasons for the eclipse of Modernism and explore the theoretical frameworks which critique the relationship between Modernism and Postmodernism.


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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