The Contemporary Art World: Theory and Structure
Contemporary art inspires passion, generates huge revenues, and dominates today’s art world. But why is this? And how can you find your way within the international contemporary art world? Gain important insight into contemporary art and the art world in this six-week online certificate course.
The Contemporary Art World: Theory and Structure is an information-rich filmed course focusing on providing you with a professional understanding of contemporary art and today’s art world. This course will give you a detailed understanding of contemporary art, artists and practices since 1980 and an in-depth map of the art world so that you can navigate it professionally or as an enthusiast.
Each module contains three elements: a lecture on the theory that underpins contemporary art practice, a lecture on the international art world and how the institutions within it function and interact, and a career-focused interview with a major player in the contemporary art world. Each module is approximately two hours of visually-rich, documentary-style video meaning your online study is always engaging and enjoyable. The course is designed for those thinking of a career with contemporary art in public or commercial spheres, for those wishing to further develop their careers in the art world, or for those looking to participate in the art market as buyers, advisors, or artists.
What you will learn:
• You will have gained an understanding of the major theories that underpin contemporary art.
• You will have been given practical and professionally actionable knowledge about the functioning of the contemporary art world.
• You will have learned about significant contemporary artists, their works, and critical responses to contemporary art.
• You will have seen how mediums, power, globalisation, memory and technology have inspired and affected artists and their work.
• You will have been taught about the most important public and private institutions and participants in the art world, and how they operate: public museums, dealers and galleries, art fairs, auction houses, artists and collectors.
• You will have come to understand the differences between contemporary art that is prized by the market and celebrated in public institutions.
• You will have been introduced to major figures in the commercial and institutional contemporary art world, and will understand their careers and influence.
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18 April - 29 May 2023
Online Orientation opens on 11 April 2022
18 July – 28 August 2023
19 September – 30 October 2023
7 November – 18 December 2023
The Christie’s Education Online Course Experience
Find out how you study with us
Online courses at Christie’s Education
- Online courses are designed for students to study when it is most convenient for them. Our pre-recorded lectures are filmed with documentary-style production values, taking you on a narrative-led journey through your chosen subject.
- Each module's lecture lasts for approximately one hour.
- Our courses are arranged in modules, containing your lectures and special features. Each week, a new module will open for you to study, allowing you to explore the content at your own pace. Typically, our courses consist of six modules overall.
During your time on the course, your Tutor will provide:
- Frequent art world announcements.
- Opportunities to ask questions and request tutor guidance.
- Tutor-initiated networking discussions with icebreaker questions and art world news.
- Art History courses have optional written assignments with detailed and supportive individual feedback to help develop ideas and enrich analytical skills and understanding.
- Art Business and Luxury courses have optional multiple-choice assignments to consolidate learning and track progress.
- Handouts and English subtitles are provided to reinforce your learning.
- Networking and knowledge-share opportunities with fellow online course participants and alumni.
- You have three weeks after the course has finished to complete your assignments and discuss the course with your tutor.
- All video lectures and course materials remain available to students for six months after assignments close.
- If you complete all the assignments and complete the course, you will receive a Certificate of Completion. Certificates are not available for self-directed courses.
- Frequent livestreamed seminars for students and alumni on topics that span the art world. Seminars are led by alumni, your tutor, and art world professionals.
The course will require between two to three hours of study time per week. There will be further reading and weekly assignments.
Read our Frequently Asked Questions to find out more information about online courses.
The course is facilitated through an online learning environment that is compatible with most modern browsers. It is the responsibility of students to have the proper hardware and software required to participate, along with access to WiFi. The basic technical requirements can be found in the FAQs.
Terms and Conditions
Please ensure you read carefully through our terms and conditions before enrolling on a course.
For any queries about this course please contact
UK: +447824 474 719
HK: +852 2978 6768
NY: +1 212 636 2127