cod. 1006759

Academic year 2023/24
2° year of course -
- Alessandra ACOCELLA
Academic discipline
Storia dell'arte contemporanea (L-ART/03)
Discipline storico-artistiche
Type of training activity
30 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Integrated course unit module: History of Contemporary Art (INTEGR. LM)

Learning objectives

According to Dublin Descriptors, the course intends to get:
- Knowledge and understanding:
The course aims at developing in students the ability in creating a framework of knowledge to understand the specificities of contemporary art and the related exhibition events.
Competences acquired in the first cycle will be strengthened and expanded allowing students to elaborate and apply original ideas.
- Applying knowledge and understanding:
Students will be provided with the tools to be applied to conduct independent and in depth studies on subjects different from those dealt with in class, but inherent to them. Comprehension and problem solving skills will be applied to new topics related to contemporary art history.
- Making Judgements:
The course aims at providing students with a knowledge of the subject and its investigative tools: they can acquire the capacity for judgment in independently dealing with the study of contemporary art, events, works and critical texts related to it. Students will be able to go into problems, to make their knowledge deeper, and to give personal judgements.
- Communication skills:

The course aims at providing students to be able to communicate information and ideas about art history with propriety of language. Students will be able to express their arguments clearly and the reasons for their conclusions, helped by their personal knowledge.
- Learning skills:

The course wants to provide students with a method, which will enable them to study and analyze contemporary art with the necessary critical skills. Thus they will be able to go on studying other topics related to their discipline in an independent and self directed way.


Good basic knowledge of contemporary art history.

Course unit content

The course focuses on the different modes of interaction of the work of art with physical space (architectural, urban and natural) during the 20th century. The trespassing of artistic intervention from the traditional languages of painting and sculpture to embrace a broader spatial dimension will be explored starting with the first environmental interventions created by the precursors of the historical avant-gardes, then moving on to analyse the developments in terms of installation that characterised art in the second half of the 20th century: from the spatial environments created by Lucio Fontana to the experiments of the neo-avant-gardes of the 1960s and 1970s and subsequent trends.

Full programme


In addition to lecture notes and materials provided by the lecturer, attending students should study the following text:
- F. Poli, F. Bernardelli, Mettere in scena l’arte contemporanea. Dallo spazio dell’opera allo spazio intorno all’opera, Johan&Levi, Monza 2016.

A series of in-depth essays (optional) will be given during the course lectures.

Non-attending students also have to study:
- Miwon Kwon, Un luogo dopo l'altro. Arte site-specific e identità localizzata, Postmedia, Milano 2020.

Teaching methods

The course consists of face-to-face lectures flanked by discussion and seminar activities.
Students will also be asked to produce a scientific paper on an environmental/installation artwork to be agreed with the teacher.

Assessment methods and criteria

During the oral exam, the questions will evaluate the level of learning from students, according to Dublin Descriptors.
A fail is determined by the lack of an understanding of the minimum content of the course, the inability to express oneself at the level of proficiency expected of students, by a lack of autonomous preparation, the inability to solve problems related to information retrieval and the decoding of images and topics of art, as well as an inability to make independent judgments and communicate content, analysis and judgments in well-argumented,competent and convincing ways.
A pass (18-23/30) is determined by the demonstration on the part of the student of having learned the fundamental and minimum contents of the course, according to the indicators listed above. The Middle-range scores (24-27/30) are assigned to the student who produces evidence of a more than sufficient level (24-25/30) or good level (26-27/30) in the evaluation indicators, (from 28/30 to 30/30 cum laude) are awarded on the basis of the student’s demonstration of a very good or excellent level.

Other information