Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Intended for use in future years
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 13 x 1 hr
Seminars / Tutorials Seminar 2 x 2 hrs
Workload Breakdown Study Time: 88 hrs (General reading, Essay preparation, and Examination revision)


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Conditions Both assessed elements must be passed. Only the failed component need be resubmitted   Essay: (2,500 words)  50%
Semester Exam 2 Hours   50%

Learning Outcomes

1. thoughtfully articulate an apprehension of landscape as a concept formed at the intercise of artistic and cultural developments
2. thoughtfully articulate an apprehension of landscape as a active contemporary practice rooted in and drawing upon a specific tradition
3. give an account of the complex fusion and revivification of elements of past practice in contemporary and recent revivals of landscape
4. know the principal artists shaping the development of that tradition

Relation to Assessment
Outcomes 1 - 4 will be assessed through an essay that aims to assess a particular and in-depth comprehension of one aspect of the module curriculum;
Outcomes 1 - 4 will be examined through an examination paper that aims to assess a broader comprehension of curriculum content

Brief description

The module is a response to the recent revival in landscape painting in Britain. It aims to discuss contemporary theory and practice of the genre within the historical context of British (and, more particularly, English) tradition from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day. The Nineteenth Century Prospect presents an overview of the contrasts and confluence of Romanticism, Classicism, and Naturalism, objectivity and imagination, science and religion than informed landscape art during this period, and which is also characteristic of revivalist landscape painting in the late-twentieth century. Furthermore, the section describes the evolution of a landscape aesthetic in the twentieth century that was no longer underpinned by religious certainties. The Modernist Outlook describes the development of a more formal (as opposed to a strictly visceral and empirical approach to landscape painting resulting from the interaction of the British tradition with European and American movements such as Post-Impressionism and abstraction in the first half of the twentieth century. This section studies the interaction in relation to Neo-Romanticism in particular. Alternative Views examines the subject matter of landscape painting, contrasting the representation of the rural, industrial, and urban landscapes, and concentrating on the practical problems and issues surrounding the `new aesthetic? of industrial and urban landscape during the period from the 1920s to the 1960s. The Contemporary Scene looks at various manifestations of, and dialogues surrounding, landscape art from the 1970s to the present. It explores the rediscovery of the British tradition in the wake of Modernism and discusses the re-evaluation and re-implementation of both a nineteenth century and a Neo-Romantic landscape aesthetic that has accompanied it. The section also traces the recovery of landscape art of a different order by British conceptualist and Earth-Art practitioners, and studies both the artists? anti-technological and post-industrial stance, and the contribution of their work to the ecological debate. In the final session, members of staff involved in landscape painting discuss their own work in the context of the module and broader traditions


The module aims to:
A. examine the contemporary practice and theories pertaining to landscape painting within relevant historical, geographical, and sociological contexts
B. study concept of landscape as a cultural, intellectual, and ideological construct
C. map the evolution of landscape in response to changes in both
D. trace relationships between contemporary and past precedents of landscape painting in terms of influence and revival
E. explore the relationship of a tradition and innovation in respect to British landscape painting
F. discuss general tendencies, movements, and individual exemplars of such
G. establish links between British and European practice
H. explore the definitional boundaries and categories of landscape


Lectures and seminars will be drawn from the following

The Nineteenth Century Prospect
1 Lecture: The Real and the Ideal: The Paradise Paradigm
2 Lecture: The Natural and the Supernatural: The Visionary and the Imagined Landscape
3 Lecture: Geology and Theology: Ruskin and Nature
4 Seminar: `Expulsion from the Garden?: Nature after Darwin

The Modernist Outlook
5 Lecture: The Formal Garden: British Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Landscape
6 Lecture: The Structured Landscape: Ben Nicholson
7 Lecture: Construction, Destruction, Reduction: Peter Lanyon
8 Seminar: Modernism and the Indigenous Tradition: St Ives

Alternative Views
9 Lecture: The Enduring Naturalism: Landscape Paintings of Stanley Spencer
10 Lecture: `The Waste Land?: The Landscape of War
11 Lecture: Landscape and Realism: The Urban Motif

The Contemporary Scene
12 Lecture: Landscape, Again: The Neo-Romantic Revival
13 Lecture: Landscape, Late-Modernism, Postmodernism: the Sculptural Response
14 Lecture: Contemporary Landscape: a Personal View
15 Lecture: Paradise Regained: The New Ecology

Transferable skills

The module will assist the development of the following academic and transferable skills:

  • Self-directed project work -- through the production of the Essay and Examination
  • IT and information handling -- you will be expected to word-process the Essay, where appropriate
  • Writing in an academic context - Essay will be composed in accordance with academic conventions.
  • Oral discussion and presentation -- These will be developed in the context of Seminars
  • Careers need awareness - N/A
  • Self-management -- you will be expected to construct a realistic timetable for the completion of the Essay and preparation for the Examination.
  • Group activity -Seminar Discussion

Reading List

Essential Reading
Adam Nicholson et al (1993) Towards a New Landscape London: Bernard Jacobson Primo search Allen Staley (1973) The Pre-Raphaelite Landscape Oxford: Clarendon Press Primo search Anna Greuzner (1979) `Great Britain and Ireland?, in Post-Impressionism London: Royal Academy of Arts, Primo search Charles Harrison (1981) English Art and Modernism London: Allen Lane Primo search Davod Lewis et al, (1985) St.Ives 1939-64, London: Tate Gallery Primo search Frances Spalding et al (1983) Landscape in Britain 1850-1950 London: Arts Council of Great Britain Primo search Ian Jeffrey (1982) British Landscape Painting London: Thames and Hudson Primo search Malcome York (1988) The Spirit of Place: Neo-Romantic Artists and their Times London: Constable, Primo search Nikolaus Pevsner (1956) The Englishness of English Art London: Architectural Press Primo search Peter Davies (1989) A Northern School: Lancashire Artists of the 20th Century Bristol: Redcliffe, Primo search Peter Fuller (1989) Theoria: Art and the absence of Grace London: Chatto and Windus Primo search Robert Hewison, (1976) John Ruskin: The Argument of the Eye, London: Thames and Judson, Primo search
Consult For Futher Information
Alan R.H.Baker and Gideon Biger (eds.), (1992) Ideology and Landscape in Historical Perspective Cambridge University Press Primo search Andrew Lanyon (1990) Peter Lanyon 1918-1964 Newlyn: Andrew Lanyon Primo search Clive Bell (1914) Art Phoenix Library, London: Chatto and Windus Primo search Herbert Read, (1931) The Meaning of Art, Harmondsorth: Penguin Primo search Jeremy Lewison (1991) Ben Nicholson Oxford: Phaidon Primo search John Beardsley (1984) Earthworks and Beyond: Contemporary Art in the Landscape New York: Abbeville Press, Primo search Kenneth McConkey (1989) British Impressionism Oxford: Phaidon Primo search Margaret Drabble (1992) Maurice Cockrill, British Modern Masters London: Bernard Jacobson Primo search Margaret Gardener, `A Portrait of Ben Nicholson?, Modern Painters, (2, no.3, Autumn 1989), 60-63. Primo search Michael Rosenthal (1982) British Landscape Painting Oxford: Phaidon Primo search Peter Fuller `Ivon or Andy: A Time for Decision?, Modern Painters, (2, no.3, Autumn 1989), 20-25. Primo search Peter Fuller, (1989) The Last Romantics?, Modern Painters, (2, no. 1, Spring 1989), 26-31. Primo search Peter Fuller, (1989) `Cecil collins: A New Dawn??, Modern Painters, (2, no. 2, Summer 1989), 29-35. Primo search Philip Dodd, An Open Letter from Philip Dodd: Art, History, and Englishness?,Modern Painters, (1, no.4 Winter 1988/9), 40-41. Primo search Richard Mabey `William Tillyer: Painting Beyond Landscape?, Modern Painters, (2, no. 3, Autumn 1989), 49-50 Primo search Roger Fry, (1981) Vision and Design, (1920) Oxford Oxford University Press Primo search S. Daniels (1989) Landscape, Image, Text Oxford: Blackwell Primo search S.R.J. Woodell, (1985) The English Landscape: Past, Present, and Future Oxford University Press, Primo search


This module is at CQFW Level 6