Modernities and postmodernities in the visual arts

This course consist in defining the formal, thematic, theoretical and aesthetic constituents of what has been called modernity and post-modernity in the visual arts (painting, sculpture, architecture, photography, video, cinema, performance, installation, etc.).

From historical figures such as Marcel Duchamp, Jackson Pollock, Le Corbusier, Robert Venturi, etc., it will be necessary to trace the history of the emergence of these two categories and the way in which they oppose and articulate between them from their birth in the 20th century until today.

Finally, we will wonder: at what moment of history do they correspond? What do they mean historically? In other words, what representations of the world do these two categories allow us to construct?



  • Clement Greenberg, Art et culture. Essais critiques (1988), Paris, Macula, 2014.
  • Fredric Jameson, Le postmodernisme ou la logique culturelle du capitalisme tardif (2007), Paris, Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, 2011.





Arnaud Maillet is a Senior Lecturer in the history of contemporary art at the Faculty of Arts & Humanities Sorbonne Université, and a member of the André Chastel Center, Research Laboratory in art history. His work intersects with the history of art and the history of seeing.


In addition to a number of articles published in French and foreign academic publications, he is also the author of several books including Le miroir noir. Enquête sur le côté obscur du reflet, Paris, Kargo/L’Eclat, 2004 (éd. en langue anglaise (US) : The Claude Glass. Use and Meaning of the Black Mirror in Western Art, New York, Zone Books, 2003) and whimsical prostheses. Prothèses lunatiques. Les lunettes, de la science aux fantasmes, Paris, Kargo/Amsterdam, 2007 (published in Italian: Gli Occhiali, Scienza, arte, illusioni, Milan, Raffaello Cortina, 2010).