Courses at MoMA / reading list


I'm intriuged by the courses in modern and contemporary art at MoMA. The member price of $130 is quite good. Does anyone have an opinion on them? James and I might consider taking one, since neither of us have any art history background.

Alternatively, if some of my readers could help me come up with a good reading list on art history, I would really appreciate it. Any period is fine as long as it's a good text on the subject.


i had to plow through many art historical texts during my bfa and mfa. there are actually not many of them that i would suggest as good reading. there are two, however that come to mind. "Kant After Duchamp" by Thierry de Duve and "The Art of Describing ; Dutch Art in the Seventeenth Century" by Svetlana Alpers. The later sounds very dry but it is actually very interesting - especially in how dutch art of the time was so different than italian art (painting).


Thanks, Mark. The Alpers is available at the library, so I'll look at that soon.

One of my favorite art history books is "The Sexuality of Christ in Renaissance Art and Modern Oblivion" by Leo Steinberg. Brilliant.

painting as model by Yve Alain Bois is great.

I liked "Outlaw Representation", although it's at least as much a cultural study as an art history text. I bought it on impulse while browsing in a bookstore on a trip to Cambridge, and have read it at least twice since. And while they are rather dry, the Thames & Hudson books can occasionally be useful. "Movements in Art Since 1945" was particularly helpful in filling in some gaps in my personal knowledge of contemporary art. That series is relatively concise and snappy, like "Art History: A Very Short Introduction" from Oxford University Press, which is next on my reading list. It looks basic but effective in terms of laying out key concepts.

Thanks, Lauren. We own "Outlaw Representation," but I haven't gotten around to reading it yet. James has, I believe.

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