ART401 Theories of Criticism (16)


This subject is intended to encourage and assist critical understanding of the theory and practice of art. What, if anything, makes works of art different to other things. How are they produced, and how do they achieve their effects? On what basis can they be said to be good or bad? We survey the basic types of answers which have been proposed to these questions, and consider the possibility that theories, while useful, are subjective, competitive, and relative.

+ Subject Availability Modes and Location

Session 1
DistanceWagga Wagga Campus
Session 2
DistanceWagga Wagga Campus
Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: ART401
Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject information

Duration Grading System School:
Two sessionsHD/FLSchool of Communication and Creative Industries

Enrolment restrictions

Honours in Art History students only

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
-be able to demonstrate a familiarity with a range of theoretical discourse from the Greeks to the present day from a reading of selected documents of critical theory;
-be able to demonstrate an analytical appreciation of key issues in theories of art
-be able to explore in detail some of the theoretical and critical implications in some areas of arts practice.


The subject will cover the following topics:
- Classical Theories - Ideas of Inspiration and Genius - Aesthetic Theories - Determinism - Psychology and Psychoanalysis - Formalism and Structuralism - Post-Structuralism


The information contained in the 2016 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: 06 September 2016. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.