This course is discontinued

KUN2075 – Collisions/Collusions: Modernity and Public Art 1880-1920

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

This course examines the problems in, and opportunities offered by, art commissions within public institutions between ca. 1880 and 1920.

Using Edvard Munch and the University of Oslo as the central subject, we examine the rise of new types of institutions at the turn of the last century, their intersection with the political sphere, and the ways in which vanguard art did or did not serve their purposes.

From Puvis de Chavannes to Diego Rivera, the course considers important artists and commissions that contributed to collective understandings of modernity and the languages of art.

Learning outcome

After completed course you will have learned:

  • some of the key concepts both in modern art between 1880 and 1920 and in modernity as a social phenenon
  • to place the later work of Edvard Munch within an international context
  • to identify and analyze some of the most important public art projects, movements, and initiatives between 1880 and 1920
  • to consider the relations among art, politics, and society
  • to probe the designations of vanguard and rearguard in modern art
  • a research project on a particular case study will yield a detailed study of a significant public art project


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Recommended previous knowledge

KUN1000 – Introduksjon til kunsthistorie and KUN1002 – Billedkunst og arkitektur fra barokk til samtid or simular courses in Art History.


The course will meet for two intensive weeks, for 2 hours per day, 20 hours in total. The course will be divided into lecture meetings and seminar discussions. In addition, there will be one recitation meeting per week (4 hours total) to review key concepts and discuss case studies and projects.

In addition to the class meetings, each student will have a meeting in person, via Skype or Fronter, to discuss the final project.

Obligatory activity:

You are required to hand in one obligatory short paper of aprox. 2 pages proposing and outling a final research project, which must be approved before the you are allowed to hand in the final examination paper.

Students are expected to give oral presentations.

Access to teaching

A student who has completed compulsory instruction and coursework and has had these approved, is not entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework. A student who has been admitted to a course, but who has not completed compulsory instruction and coursework or had these approved, is entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework, depending on available capacity.


Term paper (semesteroppgave) of aprox. 10 pages offering a case study in modern art in the public sphere.

You submit your term paper in Fronter.

The obligatory paper must be approved before the students are allowed to hand in the term paper.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

You may submit your response in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English. If you would prefer to have the exam text in English, you may apply to the course administrators.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

All courses are subject to continuous evaluation. The Department's assessments of courses are available at our web-pages, but generally only in Norwegian.

Facts about this course






The course is no longer offered.

Teaching language