The contemporary salon

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

First Committee Member

William Rothman, Committee Chair


The art world has historically been characterized by a sharp demarcation between the artist and the art critic or historian. This dissertation explores the historical basis for the current period where the role of artist is in question, but the necessity of historian or critic remains unassailable. Crucial to this argument is the concept of both the avant-garde and its opposite, the salon; these "positions" are treated as two sides of a reciprocal power relationship within the art world itself. The Contemporary Salon traces the historical shift that has not only eliminated the avant-garde but declared art itself at an end with the belief this is a sign that the salon has resumed its position of dominance in the art world.


Art History; Cinema

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