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HAR 9201 / ARTH 809 - BLOCK A SEMINAR, Integrative Seminar: Art History and Its Methodologies I: Art History and The Environment

T - 15:00-18:00
UQAM, Pavillon Judith Jasmin, JR-610


DR. NICOLA PEZOLET (Part II of II, Winter Term)

The Block A seminar is a required, year-long methodology course (Fall and Winter semesters) in which students from each of the four universities come together to discuss their doctoral research in a stimulating and collaborative environment.


The history of art is, in several respects, inseparable from the history of the environment. This seminar proposes to reflect on the mutations of the concept of environment (including in the broad sense of the term, including the natural, architectural, urban, religious, sensorial, media and institutional environment) by analyzing its dialectical relationship with the history of the environment, art. The transformations of the theories and representations of the sensible world will be analyzed in their relation to the history of art, both in a historical and critical perspective. It is a question of opening up a reflection on the different modes of interpretations of the environment that are offered by artistic and architectural practices, as well as by historical analysis and aesthetic theories.

The Integrative Seminar introduces students to advanced research in art history and to different methodological approaches. The first objective of this seminar is to integrate the new students of the inter-university doctoral program and to assist them in the development of their research project. The seminar will be structured by the study and critical analysis of texts, both classics and more recent studies. During the autumn session, a selection of key texts will be proposed to reflect on the complex links between the history of art and the notion of environment. The meetings will be held every two weeks around a sub-theme to encourage discussion and the construction of a common theoretical text base. The two professors will present a founding text in their own intellectual and academic journey. Some guest speakers from the Inter-University Doctoral Program in Art History or other Montreal institutions, participate in group activities. During the winter session, the é will be invited to submit texts in connection with their own research projects and define a problem, objectives, theoretical and methodological approaches. 

Sub-themes to be addressed: 

- Natural environment : landscape aesthetics; ecology 

- Environment and power : environmental control; Representations of the territory and cartography; Colonization and post-colonization; Art, conflict and forensic science

- Artificial environments: media environments; Sound practices; Atmosphere and immersion; Domesticity; Sensualist approaches; Theories of color; Total art work; synesthesia

- Industrial environments : art and marketing; Metropolis and modernity; Aesthetics of production; Fetishism of the goods 

- Environment and memory : museologies; Curatorial approaches; historicism; Archival practices; Heritage approaches; Conservation; Humanized landscape

- Sacred environments  : art, architecture and religion; Rites, practices and traditions; liturgy

- New environments : art, architecture and anthropocene; Meteorology; Neo-environmental utopias

Note: The bibliography below is only indicative and does not take into account the readings that will be proposed by the students and the invited lecturers. Note also that several books are listed in their original language of publication but There are translations.


Bibliography (in progress)

ALPERS, Svetlana, The Art of Describing , Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1983.

BENJAMIN, Walter, The Arcades Project , Cambridge, Mass .: The Belknap Press, 1999.

BÖHME, Gernot, "Atmosphere as an Aesthetic Concept," Daidalos 68 (June 1998): 112-115.

BONNEUIL C. and JB., FRESSOZ, The Anthropocene Event , Paris: Le Seuil, 2013.

COLOMINA, Beatriz, Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media , Cambridge, Mass. : The MIT Press, 1996.

CORBIN, Alain, The territory of emptiness. The West and the Desire of the Shore, 1750-1840 , Paris: Aubier, 1988

DESCOLA, Philippe, Beyond Nature and Culture , Paris: Gallimard, 2005.

GARAUD, Colette Garaud, The idea of ​​nature in contemporary art , Paris: Flammarion, 1994.

KOLBERT, Elizabeth, "Man in the Anthopocene," in Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change , London: Bloomsbury, 2015.

KRAUSS, Rosalind, "Sculpture in the Expanded Field," October 8 (Spring 1979): 30-44. 

LATOUR, Bruno, Policies of nature. How to get science into a democracy , Paris: La Découverte / Armillaire, 1999.

MARIN, Louis, "Landscape: Arcadia," "Phrase-name, Fragment ?, Epitaph, Epigraph ?," "The letter, the shadow, the key," in Destroying painting , Paris: Champs Flammarion, 1977.

McLUHAN, Marshall, Understanding Media , New York: Mentor, 1964.

MARTINET, Marie-Madeleine (ed.), Art and nature in Great Britain in the eighteenth century , Paris: Aubier 1980.

MORGAN, David, The Forge of Vision: A Visual History of Modern Christianity , Berkeley: University of California Press, 2015.

MORTON, Timothy, Ecology Without Nature: Rethinking Environmental Aesthetics , Cambridge, Mass .: Harvard University Press, 2007.

NYE, David E., American Technological Sublime , Cambridge, Mass .: The MIT Press, 1994.

PANOFSKY Erwin, "And in Arcadia Ego: Poussin and elegiac tradition," [1936], in The Artwork and its Meanings: Essays on the Visual Arts , Paris: Gallimard, 1969.

RABINOW, Paul, Modern French: Norms and Forms of the Social Environment , Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1995.

SCHAMA Simon, Landscape and Memory , New York: AA Knopf, 1995.

TAFURI, Manfredo, Architecture and Utopia: Design and Capitalist Development , Cambridge, Mass. : The MIT Press, 1976.

TAYLOR, William, The Vital Landscape: Nature and the Built Environment in Nineteenth-Century Britain , Aldershot / Burlington: Ashgate, 2004.

TEYSSOT, Georges and Monique Mosser (eds.), Histoire des jardins. From the Renaissance to the present , re-issue: Paris: Flammarion, 2002.

Vernant, Jean-Pierre, "The organization of space," in Myth and thought in the Greeks , Paris: Maspéro, 1965.

WEIZMAN, Eyal, Across the Walls: The Architecture of the New Urban War , Paris: La Fabrique, 2008.

WILLIAMS, Rosalind, Notes on the Underground , Cambridge, Mass .: The MIT Press, 2008.

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