Themes of Contemporary Art: Visual Art after 1980

by Jean Robertson

Other authorsCraig McDaniel (Author)
Paperback, 2010



Call number



Oxford University Press (2010), Edition: 2nd, 352 pages


"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 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 throughout with the most recent scholarship, research, and developments in the field A new chapter on memory as a theme in contemporary art and culture An updated timeline that reflects world events and developments in art and pop culture through today 3 new artist profiles 31 additional illustrations"-- "Chapter 1 presents a broad introduction to important developments in art and to ideas and events that influenced art in the period from 1980 through 2011. It introduces ideas that apply to all the themes discussed in subsequent chapters. Chapters 2 through 9 delve into the themes themselves, one theme to each chapter in the following order: identity, the body, time, memory, place, language, science, and spirituality. Chapters 2 through 9 follow a similar format. An introduction situates the theme within a broad social and cultural matrix, a brief historical overview discusses artistic approaches to the theme and related concepts in earlier eras, recent artists' treatments of the theme are evaluated in terms of key theories and strategies of art production, and the theme is examined in terms of subcategories that have received critical attention in contemporary exhibitions and publications. Following an in-depth discussion of the theme, each chapter provides two profiles of individual artists. Each profile presents a concise examination of the ideas and approaches of an artist who has devoted a substantial portion of his or her creative energies to exploring aspects of the theme under discussion"--… (more)

Physical description

9.1 x 7.4 inches


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Original publication date



978-0-19-536757-7 / 9780195367577
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