Faculty of Art and Design

Skip to content | Change text size

print version

Monash University Handbook 2010 Undergraduate - Unit

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

FacultyFaculty of Art and Design
OfferedCaulfield Second semester 2010 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Daniel Palmer


  1. A brief history of criticism and critical approaches.
  2. Weekly examination of reviews and, where possible, comparison of the judgements of reviewers with reviews of the current show in Melbourne.
  3. Examination of longer, sustained pieces of writing about art and its theoretical underpinnings. The focus of the unit is the critical examination of the genre; however, it has the consequence of discovering the aspects of art which are most likely to gain the attention of the public eye.


On successful completion of this unit, students will:

  1. have a critical perspective of the selection of the voice, the motives and the bias of art reviews and reviewers;
  2. be able to develop critical responses to reviews which uncover faults of logic and ideological prejudices and engage the imagination;
  3. appreciate criticism as a genre of writing, with the unique cultural and practical contingencies acting upon it, and understand the variety of art writing which it comprises;
  4. consider cultural paradigms-such as 'benign collusion' or 'police mentality'-which might best characterize criticism in its relation with the art that it praises or damns;
  5. consider the parallels between movements in criticism and those in fine art and the other arts and develop intuitions about the likely future directions of the genre.


Tutorial paper: 30%
Gallery report: 30%
Essay: 40%

Chief examiner(s)

Daniel Palmer

Contact hours

3 hour seminar and 9 independent study hours per week


A second year sequence in TAD units for faculty course students or permission for all other students.