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Art and Thought

Code: 100559 ECTS Credits: 6
Degree Type Year Semester
2500239 Art History OB 3 1
The proposed teaching and assessment methodology that appear in the guide may be subject to changes as a result of the restrictions to face-to-face class attendance imposed by the health authorities.


Nuria Llorens Moreno

Use of Languages

Principal working language:
catalan (cat)
Some groups entirely in English:
Some groups entirely in Catalan:
Some groups entirely in Spanish:


El estudiante ha de estar acostumbrado a realizar comentarios de texto

Objectives and Contextualisation

The course syllabus draws a tour through the history of art theory. We will study the main authors, subjects, concepts and debates that summarize the whole body of artistic theories from antiquity to modernity. We will put emphasis on the analysis of the processes of transformation of ideas, in connection to their historic, artistic and cultural contexts. The purpose of this approach is to provide the student with the necessary means and skills to understand  how the artistic concepts and thinking trends originate and evolve over time.


  • Applying the mastery of the basic critical and methodological tools in order to understand and narrate Art History and reflect on the profession of art historian.
  • Applying the specific scientific methodologies of the discipline of Art History.
  • Demonstrating they know the history of the artistic ideas and the main theoretical currents that inspired the reflection about art, cinema, its creators and its audience through history.
  • Developing critical thinking and reasoning and communicating them effectively both in your own and other languages.
  • Expressing specific knowledge about the origin, evolution and various fields of study of Art History, as well as the classic and actual subjects, vocabulary and debates of the discipline.
  • Producing innovative and competitive proposals in research and professional activity.
  • Recognising the fundamental problems, vocabulary and concepts of the Theory of Art and Cinema.
  • Respecting the diversity and plurality of ideas, people and situations.
  • Students must be capable of applying their knowledge to their work or vocation in a professional way and they should have building arguments and problem resolution skills within their area of study.
  • Students must be capable of communicating information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialised and non-specialised audiences.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Analysing classical and current debates of the History of Art.
  2. Analysing ideas about an artistic phenomenon in a given cultural context.
  3. Analysing ideas about an artistic phenomenon, and its creators and recipients in a given cultural context.
  4. Analysing the creators of an artistic phenomenon in a specific cultural context.
  5. Analysing the recipients of an artistic phenomenon in a specific cultural context.
  6. Applying the iconographic knowledge to the reading of artistic imagery.
  7. Applying the knowledge about aesthetic ideas and Art Theory to the analysis of the artistic imagery.
  8. Critically analysing basic concepts of artistic and cinematographic theory and its evolution through history.
  9. Demonstrating the knowledge of scientific methodology, sources and Art Theory in the reading, criticism and formal, iconographic and symbolic interpretation of any artistic or cinematographic imagery.
  10. Differentiating artistic theories about an artistic phenomenon, its creators and recipients in a given cultural context.
  11. Efficiently presenting knowledge in oral and written form.
  12. Encouraging creativity and fomenting innovative ideas.
  13. Engaging in debates about historical facts respecting the other participants' opinions.
  14. Identifying the main and secondary ideas and expressing them with linguistic correctness.
  15. Interpreting the fundamental concepts of Theory of Art with a critical eye.
  16. Summarising acquired knowledge about the origin and transformations experienced by the general Theory of Art and the various fields of study of the discipline.
  17. Using the knowledge of general Art Theory in the criticism of the artistic imagery.
  18. Working in teams, respecting the other's points of view and designing collaboration strategies.



  1. 1. Antiquity and Middle Ages

    1.1. The concept of mimesis or imitation of nature: pleasure and knowledge

    1.2 Beauty in classical and medieval culture. Ideal beauty, nature and the arts.

    2. Renaissance

    2.1. Theories of representation of nature in the Renaissance.

    2.2. Renaissance cult of beauty and classical thought on beauty

    3. The seventeenth century

    The concept ut pictura poesis and its influence in humanistic theory of art. The Academy: systems and principles.

    4. Enlightenment and Romanticism

    4.1. Transformations of art and artistic theory in the Enlightenment. A new approach to beauty and the artist: the enlightenment theories of taste and genius.

    4.2. Nature, art and  the subject, a brief history of modern sublime.

    4.3. Romantic philosophy of art: artistic truth and imagination. The romantic artist

    5. The 19th century

    The emergence of modernity and the crisis of the Academy. Towards a definition of modern art and artist.




Documents search and wriing exercices

Individual work: writing a critical essay

Text analysis of the readings assigned to the topics covered in the course.


Title Hours ECTS Learning Outcomes
Type: Directed      
Lectures 50 2 8, 4, 1, 5, 2, 7, 9, 10, 14, 15, 13, 11, 17
Type: Supervised      
Individual work: writing a critical essay 25 1 8, 4, 1, 2, 3, 6, 10, 12, 14, 13, 11, 16
Text analysis of the readings assigned to the topics covered in the course 25 1 3, 14, 13, 11
Type: Autonomous      
Documents search and writing exercices 50 2 8, 4, 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 13, 11, 16, 17


The assessement will draw in three exercices:

Two papers and the text analysis of the readings assigned to the topics covered in the course.

In the event that tests or exams cannot be taken onsite, they will be adapted to an online
format made available through the UAB’s virtual tools (original weighting will be maintained).
Homework, activities and class participation will be carried out through forums, wikis and/or
discussion on Teams, etc. Lecturers will ensure that students are able to access these virtual
tools, or will offer them feasible alternatives

In case of plagirarism:

In the event of a student committing any irregularity that may lead to a significant variation
in the grade awarded to an assessment activity, the student will be given a zero for
this activity, regardless of any disciplinary process that may take place. In the event of
several irregularities in assessment activities of the same subject, the student will be given
a zero as the final grade for this subject.

Papers review procedure:

Durig the evaluative process, the lecturer will inform students (Moodle) of the papers review procedure.

The Student will be rated as ‘Not assessable’ if he/she has not delivered more than 30 % of the evaluation work.

Second chance examination:

The student could submit a second chance examination of the papers with a rating inferior to 5.


Assessment Activities

Title Weighting Hours ECTS Learning Outcomes
Paper 1 40 0 0 8, 4, 1, 5, 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 13, 11, 16, 17
Paper 2 40 0 0 8, 4, 1, 5, 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 13, 11, 16, 18, 17
Text analysis of the readings assigned to the topics covered in the course 20 0 0 8, 4, 1, 5, 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 13, 11, 16, 17




  • BARASCH, Moshe, Teorías del Arte: De Platón a Winckelmann, Alianza, Madrid, 2005 .
  • BARASCH, Moshe, Modern Theories of Art, 1: From Winckelmann to Baudelaire, New York University Press, New York, 1990.
  • BARASCH, Moshe, Modern Theories of Art, 2: From Impressionism to Kandinsky, New York University Press, New York, 1998.)

BODEI, Remo, La forma de lo bello, Visor, Madrid, 1998

BOZAL,Valeriano (ed.), Historia de las ideas estéticas y de las teorías artísticas contemporáneas, Vols. I, II, Visor, Madrid, 1996

FRANZINI, Elio i MAZZOCUT-MIS, Maddalena, Estetica: I nomi, i concetti, le correnti, Bruno Mondadori, Milano, 1996. HARRISON, Charles; Wood, Paul i GAIGER, Jason, (eds.), Art in Theory, 1648-1815: An Anthology of Changing Ideas, Blackwell, Oxford, 2000.

HARRISON, Charles & WOOD, Paul with GAIGER, Jason (eds.), Art in Theory, 1815-1900: An Anthology of Changing Ideas, Blackwell, Oxford, 1998.

HARRISON, Charles & WOOD, Paul (eds.), Art in Theory, 1900-2000: An Anthology of Changing Ideas, Blackwell, Oxford, 2002.

HOLT, Elisabeth Gilmore, A Documentary History of Art, Vols. I i II, Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey, 1981, 1982.

HOLT, Elisabeth Gilmore, From Classicists to the Impressionists, Art and Architecture in the 19th Century, Vol. III, Yale University Press, New haven & London, 1986.

KEARNEY, Richard i RASMUSSEN, David, (eds.), Continental Aesthetics, Romanticism to Postmodernism, An Anthology, Blackwell, Oxford, 2001.

KELLY, Michael (ed.), Encyclopedia of Aesthetics, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1998.

LORENTE, Jesús-Pedro, Historia de la crítica del arte. Textos escogidos y comentados, Prensas universitarias de Zaragoza, Zaragoza, 2005.

  • POCHAT, Gotz, Historia de la estética y la teoría del arte. De la Antigüedad al siglo XIX, Akal, Madrid, 2008.

SCRUTON, Roger, Beauty: a very short introduction, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2011.

SMITH, Paul i WILDE, Carolyn, A Companion to Art Theory, Blackwell, Oxford, 2002.

TATARKIEWICZ, Wladyslaw, Historia de la estética, Vols. I-II, Akal, Madrid, 1991.

TATARKIEWICZ, Wladyslaw, Historia de seis ideas, Tecnos, Madrid, 1987.

V.V.A.A., Fuentes y Documentos para la Historia del Arte, Vols. I-VIII, Gustavo Gili, Barcelona, 1979.

  • WILLIAMS, Robert, Art theory, an Historical Introduction, Blackwell, Oxford, 2009.





Tema 1.1

ARISTÓTELES, Poética, Gredos, Madrid, 1992.

BOZAL,Valeriano, Mímesis: las imágenes y las cosas, Visor, Madrid, 1987.

BREDEKAMP, Horst, Teoría del acto icónico, Akal, Madrid, 2017.

DURO, Paul, Theorizing Imitation in the Visual Arts: Global Contexts (Art History Special Issues), Blackwell, Oxford, 2015. GOMBRICH, Ernst H., Arte e Ilusión, Gustavo Gili, Barcelona, 1982.

HALLIWELL, Stephen, The Aesthetics of mimesis ancient texts and modern problems, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 2002.

KRIEGER, Murray, Ekphrasis: The Illusion of the Natural Sign, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1992.

OSBORNE, Robin, Archaic and Classical Greek Art, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1998.

PLATÓ, República, Gredos, Madrid, 1986.

POLLIT, J.J., Art and experience in classical Greece, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1972.

POTOLOSKY, Mathew, Mimesis, Routledge, New York, 2006.

SETTIS, Salvatore (ed.), I Greci: storia, cultura, arte, società, Einaudi, Torino, 1996.

SMALL, Jocelyn Penny, The Parallel worlds of classical art and text, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2003.

Tema 1.2

BRUYNE, Edgar de, La estética de la Edad Media, Visor, Madrid, 1987.

BRUYNE, Edgar de, Etudes d'esthétique médiévale, Vols. I i II, Albin Michel, Paris, 1998.

CARCHIA, Gianni, L'estetica antica, Laterza, Roma, 2000.

CARRUTHERS, Mary J., The experience of beauty in the Middle Ages, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2013.

ECO, Umberto, Art i bellesa en l'estètica medieval, Destino, Barcelona, 1990.

FUMAGALLI, Maria teresa, L'estetica medievale, il Mulino, Bologna, 2001.

HYLAND, Drew A., Plato and the question of beauty, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, 2008 [1 recurs electronic UAB] JANAWAY, Christopher, Images of Excellence, Plato's Critique of the Arts, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1998.

LOMBARDO, Giovanni, L'estetica antica, Lessico del'estetica, il Mulino, Bologna, 2002.

PANOFSKY, Erwin, Idea, Cátedra, Madrid, 1987.

PLATÓ, El Banquet, Fedre, Edicions 62, Barcelona, 1998.

POLLIT, Jerome J, «La nascita dell'arte classica greca in un universo platonico», a LA ROCA, Eugenio (ed.), L'esperimento dellla perfezione. Arte e società nell'Atene di Pericle, Electa, Milano, 1988.

TATARKIEWICZ, Wladyslaw, Historia de la estética, Vols. I i II, Akal, Madrid, 1991.


Tema 2.1

ALBERTI, Leon Battista, De la pintura y otros escritos sobre arte, Tecnos, Madrid,1999.

BLUNT, Anthony, La teoría de las artes en Italia (del 1450 a 1600), Cátedra, Madrid, 1980.

ELKINS, James & WILLIAMS, Robert, Renaissance theory, Routledge, New York, 2008.

BELLONE, Enrico i ROSSI, Paolo, Leonardo e l'età della ragione, Scientia, Milano, 1982.

FARAGO, Claire (Ed), Re- reading Leonardo : the "Treatise on painting" across Europe, 1550-1900, Ashgate, 2009.

KEMP, Martin, Leonardo da Vinci: Las maravillosas obras de la naturaleza y el hombre, Akal, Madrid, 2011.

LEONARDO, El tratado de la Pintura, Akal, Madrid, 2004.

SUMMERS, David, El juicio de la sensibilidad. Renacimiento, naturaliso y emergència de la estètica, Tecnos, Madrid, 1993.

RYKWERT, Joseph & ENGEL, Anne, Leon Battista Alberti, Electa, Milano, 1994.


Tema 2.2

BAROCCHI, Paola, (ed.), Scritti d'Arte del Cinquecento, Vols I-V, Einaudi, Torino, 1977-1979.

CASTELLI, Patrizia, L'estetica del Rinascimento, Lessico del'estetica, il Mulino, Bologna, 2005.

CHASTEL, André, Arte y Humanismo en Florencia en la época de Lorenzo el Magnífico, Cátedra, Madrid, 1982.

CHASTEL, André, Marsile Ficin et l'art, Droz, Genève, 1996.

FICINO, Marsilio, De Amore, Tecnos, Madrid, 1985.

FICINO, Marsilio, Sobre el furor divino y otros textos, Anthropos, Barcelona, 1993.

KRISTELLER, Paul O. El pensamiento renacentista y sus fuentes, FCE, México, 1993.

PANOFSKY, Erwin, Estudios sobre Iconología, Alianza, Madrid, 1985.

SUMMERS, David, Michelangelo and the Language of Art: Fantasy and Order, Princenton University Press, Princenton, 1981.

TATARKIEWICZ, Wladyslaw, Historia de la estética, Vol. III, Akal, Madrid, 1991.

VASARI, Giorgio, Las Vidas de los más excelentes arquitectos, pintores y escultores italianos desde Cimabue a nuestros tiempos, Cátedra, Madrid, 2002.


Tema 3

GOLDSTEIN, Carl, Teaching art: academies and schools from Vasari to Albers, Cambrigde 1999.

LEE, Reenselaer, W., Ut Pictura Poesis, Cátedra, Madrid, 1982.

MILANI, Raffael, I volti della grazia, il Mulino, Bologna, 2009.

PEVSNER, Nikolaus, Las academias de arte, Cátedra, Madrid, 1982.

PUTTFARKEN, Thomas, The Discovery of the Pictorial Composition: theories of visual order in painting 1400-1800, Yale University Press, New Haven, London, 2000.

SNYDER, Jon R. L'estetica del Barrocco, Lessico dell'estetica, il Mulino, Bologna, 2005.


Tema 4.1

ASSUNTO, Rosario, Naturaleza y razón en la estética del setecientos, Visor, Madrid, 1989.

BECQ, Annie, Genèse de l'esthétique frangaise moderne 1680-1814, Albin Michel, Paris, 1994.

BOZAL,Valeriano, El gusto, Visor, Madrid, 1999.

CASSIRER, Ersnt, La Filosofía de la Ilustración, F.C.E., México, 1972.

DIDEROT, Denis, Escrits filosòfics, Edicions 62/Diputació de Barcelona, Barcelona, 1983.

DIDEROT, Denis, Escritos sobre art, Siruela, Madrid, 1994.

FRANZINI, Elio, La estética del siglo XVIII, Visor, Madrid, 2000.

GERARD, Alexander, Un ensayo sobre el genio, Siruela, Madrid, 2009

HOFMANN, Werner, Une époque en rupture 1750-1830, Gallimard, París, 1995.

HOGARTH, William, El análisis de la belleza,Visor, Madrid, 1997.

HUME, David, La norma del gusto y otros ensayos, Nexos, Península, Barcelona, 1989.

KANT, Immanuel, Crítica del Judici, Edicions 62, Barcelona, 2004.

MORETTI, Giampiero, El genio, Antonio Machado, Madrid, 2016.

SAINT GIRONS, Baldine, Esthétiques du XVIIIe siècle, Philippe Sers, Paris, 1990.


Tema 4.2

ADDISON, Joseph, Los placeres de la imaginación y otros ensayos de The Spectator, Visor, Madrid, 1991.

ASHFIELD, Andrew i BOLLA, Peter de. (eds.)The sublime: a reader in British eighteenth-century aesthetic theory, Cambridge University Press, Cabridge, 1996.

BODEI, Remo, Paisajes sublimes: el hombre ante la naturaleza salvaje, Siruela, Madrid, 2011.

BURKE, Edmund, Indagación filosófica sobre el origen de nuestras ideas acerca de lo sublime y de lo bello, Tecnos, Madrid, 1987.

DANTO, Arthur C., El abuso de la belleza: la estética y el concepto de arte, Paidós, Barcelona, 2005.

LONGINO, Sobre lo sublime, Gredos, Madrid, 1996.

MONK, Samuel H., Il Sublime, Marietti, Gènova, 1991.

SAINT GIRONS, Baldine, Lo Sublime, Visor, Madrid, 2002.

SCHILLER, Friedrich, Del Sublime, SE SRL, Milano, 1989.

SHAFTESBURY, Anthony Ashley Cooper, Los Moralistas, E. I. U, Barcelona, 1997.


Tema 4.3

ABRAMS, Meyer Howard, El espejo y la lámpara, Barral, Bacelona, 1975.

ARNALDO, Javier, (ed.), Fragmentos para una teoría romántica del arte, Tecnos, 1987.

BARASCH, Moshe, Modern Theories of Art, 1: From Winckelmann to Baudelaire, New York University Press, New York, 1990. D'ANGELO, Paolo, La Estética del Romanticismo, Visor, Madrid, 1999.

DE PAZ, Alfredo, La revolución romántica , Tecnos, Madrid, 1992.

GUSDORF, Georges, Le romantisme, Vols. I i II, Payot, Paris, 1993.

TOWNSEND, Joyce H. (ed.), William Blake: The painter at work, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 2003.

HARTLEY, Keith et al. (eds.), The Romantic Spirit in German Art 1790-1990, Thames and Hudson, London, 1994.

HOLDERLIN, Friedrich, Hiperió, Columna, Barcelona, 1993.

KLEIST, Friedrich von, Sobre el teatro de marionetas y otros ensayos de arte y filosofía, Hiperión, Madrid, 1988.

KOERNER, Joseph Leo, Caspar David Friedrich and the subject of landscape, Reaktion books, London, 1990.

MARÍ, Antoni, Lhome de geni, Edicions 62, Barcelona, 1984.

RELLA, Franco, L'estetica del Romanticismo, Donzelli, 2006.

ROSEN, Charles, The Romantic generation, Harvard University Press, Cambridge (Mass.), 1998.

SCHILLER, Friedrich, Sobre poesía ingenua y poesía sentimental, Icaria, Barcelona, 1985.

V.V.A.A., Romanticismo: il nuovo sentimento della natura, Electa, 1993.

Tema 5

AZÚA, Félix de, Baudelaire y el artista de la vida moderna, Anagrama, Barcelona, 1999.

BANN, Stephen, Ways around modernism, Routledge, New York, 2007.

BARASCH, Moshe, Modern Theories of Art, 2: From Impressionism to Kandinsky, New York University Press, New York, 1998. BAUDELAIRE, Charles, Écrits sur l'art, Gallimard, Paris, 1971.

CHIPP, Herschel B.(ed.) Teorías del arte contemporáneo, Akal, Madrid, 1995.

CRARY, Jonathan, Las técnicas del observador: visión y modernidad en el siglo XIX, Cendeac, Salamanca, 2008.

DORRA, Henry, Symbolist art theories: a critical anthology, University of California Press, Berkeley, 1994.

FRASCINA, Francis et al., La modernidad y lo moderno: la pintura francesa en el siglo XIX, Akal, Madrid, 1998.

FRASCINA, Francis & HARRIS, Jonathan, Art in modern culture: an anthology of critical texts, Harper Collins, New York, 1992. GAY, Peter, Modernidad. La atracción de la herejía de Baudelaire a Beckett, Barcelona, Paidós, 2007.

GREENBERG, Clement, La pintura moderna y otros ensayos, Siruela, Madrid, 2006.

HARRISON, Charles, Modernismo, Encuentro, Madrid, 2000.

MALLARMÉ, Stephane, Manet, Madrid, Casimiro, 2012.

SOLANA, Guillermo Ed. El impresionismo: la visión original, Siruela, Madrid, 1997

WOOD, Paul (ed.), The Challenge of the Avant-Garde, New Haven, Yale University Press, London, Open University, 1999 ZOLA, Émile, Manet, Donzelli, Roma, 2006.