Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Art, Design and Architecture
OfferedCaulfield Second semester 2012 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Daniel Palmer


This unit explores the related practices of art criticism and curatorship and their role in communicating art to its publics. It offers a brief history of criticism/curatorship and critical/curatorial approaches, an assessment of reviews, including those of local exhibitions in Melbourne, and considerations of the theoretical underpinnings of critical reception. Students are invited to explore how they might themselves participate in the production of visual critique in the form of exhibition reviews, catalogue essays, curatorial statements, artist statements and so forth.


On successful completion of this subject, students should:

  1. have a critical perspective of the selection of the voice, motives and bias of art critics and criticism;
  2. 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;
  3. understand the role of the curator as having a creative, political and active part in the production, mediation and dissemination of contemporary art;
  4. identify and understand the developments specific to the rise of curator as an important cultural commentator, and the contemporary challenges faced by art criticism; and
  5. have developed their ability to think creatively and express their ideas clearly in written communication.


Gallery Review (1000 words): 30%
Class Presentation (equivalent 1000 words): 20%
Research Essay (2000 words): 40%
Class Participation: 10%

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Daniel Palmer

Contact hours

One 1 hour lecture and one 2 hour tutorial per week.


A first year sequence in TAD units for students enrolled in a Faculty of Art and Design course or permission.