Academic year
2018/2019 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
EM3F25 (AF:275909 AR:160659)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Master's Degree Programme (DM270)
Educational sector code
4th Term
Course year
Go to Moodle page
The course is part of the historical-artistic courses that characterize the Master’s Degree in Economics and Management of Arts and Cultural Activities (EGArt). It therefore intends to provide students with the knowledge and comprehension of the main lines of (historical, theoretical, aesthetic, social, technical) development of photography in a constant comparison with the contemporary visual arts and image theory.
Excellent knowledge and understanding of the contemporary status and theory of images, as well as of the crucial relationship between photography and other visual arts and idioms. Students are expected to acquire adequate theoretical skills through a methodology, which, even in view of their future professional needs, begins with a careful interpretation of texts and images. This will help them to understand the subject of study and to build their own thought and critical judgment. Interaction and active participation during classes will be encouraged as much as possible to increase their cognitive abilities. Furthermore, for the final exam, a written paper will be required that the students will present in front of their teacher and classmates in order to both exercise their expressive-communicative skills and acquire specific terminological competence.
Good knowledge of the history of contemporary art, as well as of the major historical events and main movements of thought between the 19th and the 21st century.
During the course some of the major artists and photographers who in their writings have investigated, in parallel to their visual works, crucial issues about the invention and production of images between the 20th and 21st century will be examined (among them, Alfred Stieglitz, Paul Strand, Eadweard Muybridge, László Moholy-Nagy, Man Ray, August Sander, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Gisèle Freund, Ugo Mulas, Gerhard Richter, Franco Vaccari, Allan Sekula, Jeff Wall, Hito Steyerl, Trevor Paglen). Particular attention will be paid to: the relationship between photography and other visual idioms, new media and contemporary society; the correlation between the photographic documentary desire and artistic experimentation; the changes occurred in the production, circulation and reception of photography after the digital turn; the methods and meanings of archiving and displaying photographs in museums and other art places.

To acquire the necessary theoretical knowledge:

1. Rosalind Krauss, "Teoria e storia della fotografia", Milan: Bruno Mondadori, 1996 (First ed. in French, "Le Photographique", 1990).
2. Maurizio Guerri and Francesco Parisi (eds.), "Filosofia della fotografia", Milan: Cortina, 2013.
3. Claudio Marra, "Fotografia e arti visive", Rome: Carocci, 2014.

In addition to the three texts mentioned above, during classes the teacher will provide a series of theoretical texts by artists-photographers –also required for the exam– whose list will be available at the beginning of the course.

Exam requirements:

a) The preparation of a paper (around ten pages) on an author, a theme or a work that the student can choose among those discussed during classes. The subject must be previously agreed with the teacher and delivered at least fifteen days before the oral test;
b) An oral test, during which the contents of the written paper will be discussed, in addition to the topics and the bibliography indicated above.
During classes the interpretative reading of theoretical texts and of images will be carried out as methodological exercise to facilitate learning. The theoretical texts discussed by the teacher, as well as the selection of images that will be projected in the classroom, will be made available to students on the online platform Moodle during classes (for copyright reasons both the images and the texts can not be made available in any other way). Any possible visits to exhibitions and lectures by other teachers or experts in the field will be an integral part of the course –more information will be provided during classes.
Class attendance is recommended to all students and is required to those who wish to apply for a thesis on the course subject, especially in relation to contemporary visual art, production and culture. Students who are not able to attend classes can choose two of the following books to be added to the programme for attending students:

- Cristina Baldacci, "Archivi impossibili: Un’ossessione dell’arte contemporanea", Milan: Johan & Levi, 2016.
- Geoffrey Batchen, "Burning with Desire: The Conception of Photography", Cambridge (MA): MIT Press, 1997.
- Roland Barthes, "Camera Lucida: Notes on Photography", New York: Hill and Wang, 1981 (First ed. in French, "La chambre claire. Note sur la photographie", 1980).
- Walter Benjamin, "L’opera d’arte nell’epoca della sua riproducibilità tecnica: arte e società di massa" ["The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction"], Turin: Einaudi, 1966.
- John Berger, "Ways of Seeing", London: Penguin, 1972.
- Jean-Alphonse Keim, "Breve storia della fotografia", Turin: Einaudi, 1976 (First ed. in French, "Histoire de la Photographie", 1970).
- Susan Sontag, "On Photography", New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1977.
- Antonio Somaini, Andrea Pinotti, "Cultura visuale. Immagini, sguardi, media, dispositivi", Turin: Einaudi, 2016.
- Italo Zannier, "Storia e tecnica della fotografia", Rome-Bari: Laterza, 1982.

Non-attending students are advised to contact the teacher to confirm the exam programme, particularly if there are special requests or interests that are not part of the bibliography listed above but are coherent with their curricula and the preparation of their thesis.

written and oral

This subject deals with topics related to the macro-area "Poverty and inequalities" and contributes to the achievement of one or more goals of U. N. Agenda for Sustainable Development

Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme: 17/02/2019