02290 - History of Modern Art

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students will: - know the main events and crucial issues of the Art especially Italian art from the fifteenth to the late eighteenth century; - acquire the methodological tools for reading the work of art from a formal, stylistic, iconographic and technical point of view; - connect artworks to the context of historical, social and cultural production; - move in the main issues and research lines of the Art; - recognize and comment on the works of the most representative artists of the various movements.

Course contents

The course is composed by two parts of six CFU each, taught by teachers, Daniele Benati and Irene Graziani. Students enrolled in DAMS are required to prepare both modules (12 credits). Students enrolled in other courses are required to prepare the first module (6 credits) or both the modules (9 credits) N.B. The syllabus is the same for attending and non-attending students.

First part (6 CFU) - Institutional part

History of art in Italy from the Renaissance to the Neoclassicism (teacher, Irene Graziani)

Second part (6 CFU) - Monographic part

The Carracci's Reform: the Ludovico's Role (teacher, Daniele Benati)


1) First part (6 CFU):

1/a. It is requested to know the chapters of the textbook with reference to the period from the Renaissance to the Neoclassicism. The recommended textbook is:

- Pierluigi De Vecchi, Elda Cerchiari, Arte nel tempo, Milano, Bompiani, 1991 (and later prints).

The choice of other textbooks should be arranged with Prof. Graziani.

1/b. Furthermore, it is requested to know at least two important artworks / monuments / museums / churches / palaces from the period the exam concerns directly and deeply with the aid of related readings.

2) Second part (6 CFU):

A text chosen among the following:

- Mostra dei Carracci, a cura di Cesare Gnudi, ed. Alfa, Bologna, 1956;

- Francesco Arcangeli, Corpo, azione, sentimento, fantasia. Naturalismo ed espressionismo nella cultura artistica emiliano-bolognese: lezioni 1967-1970, a cura di Vanessa Pietrantonio, con un’introduzione di Vera Fortunati, Bologna, Il mulino, 2015, 2 voll. (in part. vol. 2, pp. 9-154);

- Ludovico Carracci, a cura di Andrea Emiliani, catalogo della mostra, Nuova Alfa, 1993;

- Alessandro Brogi, Ludovico Carracci, Ed. Tipoarte, Ozzano nell’Emilia, 2001.

Teaching methods

The course will be composed by lectures and visits lead by teachers Benati and Graziani to monuments and museums.

A few seminars are scheduled. Further information will be given in the early lectures. The attendance may replace point 1/b.

Assessment methods

Students will be assessed in two ways:

- by means of a written text concerning the general context which will have the objective of testing the student's knowledge of the socio-artistic fabric with reference to the XV, XVI and XVIII centuries (preparation will be provided by the course lectures supplemented by coursebook study). This exam will involve the projection of ten images of artworks. Each image will be screened for 5 minutes during which the candidate must fill in a profile indicating the work's historical context and, if possible, the name of the artist. The candidate may repeat the test but a poor result will not prevent admission to the oral test, although it will count towards the final result.

- by means of an oral examination in which the candidate is required to engage in critical analysis based on the course reading.


The written test will be marked as follows:

- Correct image recognition (artist, subject, date, place of storage, short critical reading of its iconographic aspects, historical context and stylistic characteristics): on a scale of 1 to 3 points;

- Incorrect identification or failure to identify the image: zero points.

The pass mark is 18/30.

The written test counts for a third of the final mark (10/30).

The written exam can be sat whenever there is an oral exam session.

During the oral examination, students must demonstrate to have acquired a critical understanding of the topics discussed during the course and a critical knowledge of the recommended bibliography.

After completing the course students will:

• know the features of artwork in early modern period

• identify and analyse the most significant works

• develop personal reflections

• demonstrate a critical understanding of the various issues discussed

• use correct terminology

The achievement of a comprehensive vision of the issues, the possession of a specific language, the originality of the reflection as well as familiarity with artwork analysis tools will be evaluated with marks of excellence. Knowledge mostly mechanical or mnemonic of the matter, a capacity of synthesis and analysis articulated or not, a use of proper language but not always appropriate, as well as a school domain of the topics of the course will lead to fair valuations. Training gaps or use inappropriate language, as well as a lack of knowledge of the topics will lead to votes that will amount on the sufficiency threshold. Training gaps, inappropriate language, lack of orientation within the bibliography and inability to analyse will be evaluated negatively.

The assessment procedure is the same for students who attend or not lectures.

Teaching tools

Lectures with the aid of .ppt presentations, visits, class exercises.

Office hours

See the website of Daniele Benati