Dissertations

Please find below a list of some of all the dissertations our students wrote. you can browse through them, as well as sorting them through the tags provided.

The purpose of this essay is to try look at Suzanne Belperron's jewelleryand her collectors. The main question looked  into is how the act of buying jewellery extensively could be considered consumption or if it can, does this imply a collecting pattern?

The nowadays famous jewellery designer ...

Although much has been written about the Second World War period, this dissertation examines the confiscation of visual art that took place during the Second World War in the occupied territories from an historic and legal point of view.

It begins with a chronological  analysis of Nazi policy on modern...

Many historians recognized Bernard Berenson (1865-1959) as an important connoisseur of Italian quattrocento and Renaissance art. Yet very little is known about his major collaborator, Mary Berenson (1864-1944). Mary was not only Bernard's wife, but also a writer and art critic on her own. It is the purpose of this...

Throughout the last century, two fashion designers left their mark on the art world: Jacques Doucet (1853-1929)) was the first couturier  to gather impressive art collections as attested by the sales of 1912 and 1972. Then, Yves Saint Laurent (1936-2008) took over the tradition until death.

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The purpose of this paper is to analyse the renewal of architectural photography that started in the 1980s under the influence of a changing economic, political and artistic context in European countries.

Through an exploration of the artistic emancipation of photography and the transformations of urbanism,...

This dissertation aims to analyse the singularity and uniqueness of Jean Fournier, a bookseller turned gallerist who devoted most of his life to the promotion and defence of abstract art in Paris during the second half of the twentieth century. This paper first tackles Jean Fournier's original itinerary and his...

Through using the lives and works of Aubrey Beardsleyand Robert Mapplethorpe, two very different artists from two different centuries, and their use of provocative themes the question of do we classify them as erotic or pornographic is the enquiry proposed by this paper.

On the occasion of a Sotheby's Modern Impressionist auction in London, I was particularly attracted by the picture "The Gipsy" painted by the artist van Dongen.

I immediately had the feeling that a deeper analysis of van Dongen's life and work would be an extraordinary challenge to take up.

...

This dissertation aims to analyse the phenomenon of corporate art collecting within the French Financial field. Focused on Carmignac Gestion, Neuflize ABN/AMRO and Société Générale art collections, this study will investigate how these three French financial firms reconcile their art passion with their business...

The object of this research is to understand the underlying components of the French public presentation of German new-expressionism at the time of their arrival on the international scene in the 1980s. Parting from the texts of these exhibition catalogues, it aims to find the reasons behind their focuses and the...

To understand Italian art: a choice that guided my history of art studies; a taste, which was then fed by my Italian background and my recurring journeys in this country.

As a matter of fact and more exactly, the frame of thought established by the Italian Renaissance was a mark during my university studies...

The present MA dissertation investigates the notion of 'sudden neglect' of Leiden Fine Manner Paintings, as purportedly occured during the early 1860s. Art historian Arthurt K. Wheelock Jr. regards this 'swift decline' in reception as a result from art critic Thoré-Buerger's widely published campaign to...

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The eighteenth century in France was a time of Chinoserie. The curiosity on this mysterious Far East country had great influence in fine art and decorative art in France. Since the end of seventeenth century, the scholarly study in China has begun. In Paris, orientalists in the Académie started to put their attention...
A fascinating and complex figure, Sir Arthur Evans is generally remembered as the discoverer of the Minoan civilization in Crete. he was, however,not only an archaeologist, but also a great curator and a profilic collector. The taste for collecting was an activity he inherited from his father, Sir John Evans, who...

This paper examines the rethorics of cultural policy in Singapore with respect to its 'realities', through the lens of the visual arts. Using cultural branding and semiotics, politics of policy, and globalisation theory as frameworks for its analysis. The Singapore pavilion at the Venice Biennales is used as the...

Throughout the nineteenth century and more particularly during the Victorian era, the study and the preservation of the national antiquities became a major conecrn. Starting within the antiquarian community, it has spread from the local learned societies to finally reach the National Institution and among them,...

The primary purpose of this dissertation is to connect factors and figures to the rise of status of watercolour during the early nineteenth century, in London. It focuses firstly on elements of context related to the art world, which favoured the ascension of the medium. Then, it emphasises on particular artists,...
This dissertation explores the role that alternative biennals have played over the past few years, in particular investigating what was unusual about them to lead to their categorisation as alternative. The study examines what are the differences between them and the more conventional and established biennals....
Jacques Doucet (1853-1929) was a fashion designer of the end of the nineteenth century and beginning of the twentieth century. With his success, he decided to start a French eighteenth century paintings and furniture collection. In the meantime, he also developed an art and archaeology library which concentrated on...

"One consequence of our so called 'experience economy' has been a growing obsession with collecting possessions, memories and experiences in order to create personal histories, mementoes of our lives or simply to keep track of the immediate past. In the tandem with this has been the increasing fortune of design as...

Erwin Blumenfield was one of the most important artists of his time. Famous for his fashion photography in the forties and fifties, he created ironic images thanks to his taste for experimentations and innovation. The market for photography appeared in the seventies, but my study will focus on the later rise of the...

This dissertation focuses on the value of performance art within today's contemporary art market trying to deduct some broader conclusions about emerging behavioural patterns in our current Western society, making use of a commercial and socio-psychological approach.

Starting from concepts of ephemeral...

With the globalisation and the constant increase of the stolen art traffic, it seems that this phenomenon operates in a symbiotic way with other kinds of organised criminality: laundering of money, drugs traffic, guns traffic and terrorist organisations. The growing interest in art and the huge prices of...

From the starting observation that there are two generations of French designers producing in the 50s, examination of the current market presents a true disparity in terms of their reception. By examining the main reasons for this difference, it becomes possible to understand who are the protagonists of the market...

Throughout the centuries copying has been a significant part of artistic activity. The imitation of pre-existing art was always crucial, because it enabled the young artists to acquire a vocabulary with which to transfer an image from the visible world onto the two-dimensional surface on the paperor canvas. Copies...

The hotel Drouotwith its unique auction system is a brand famous worldwide. In 2010, auctions fetched 440 million Euros in total, which is 6.5% more comparing to its revenue in 2009. Despite this positive result, Parisian art market is nowadays far behind New York and London. French auctioneers and, especially a...

This dissertation wants to study the market of German Expressionism from the mid-twentieth century up to the present day. The reception of German Expressionism is related to the economical development of the movement and it is the aim to understand to what extent external factors have driven the market. An ideal...

This dissertation addresses what motivates a contemporary commission in Leeds, how the commission is realised, how the nature of the commission impacts on locational identityand finally how we can learn from historic practice.

 

Contemporary public art commissioners are motivated by a variety of...

What are the impacts to the insurance companies on the contemporary art market?

The goal of this study is to analyse the impacts of insurance companies on the contemporary art market, more precisely in France area. And to understand, does the involvment of the insurance companies in the ...

The purpose of this paper is to examine an ambivalence in the Contemporary Art market in the scope of financial investment. The recent remarkable development of contemporary art has raised the attention on 'new buyers' also known as investors. The aim of this paper is to observe and analyse the relationship between...

The object of this research is female art collectors fromthe emerging market of Russia and how do they operate in the global art world today. It aims to achieve growth of collecting art by women in Russia; to explain thge expansion in the activities of the female collectors; and to understand the level of progress...

In the last five years, an increasing number of recent works by artists born after 1980 has been offered at auction, fetching results far above their pre-sale and their prices on the primary market. The phenomenon, commonly referred to as flipping, has raised concern among art market professionals, who have voiced...

The increasing number of publications focusing on street art with different angles demonstrates how trendy but also how vast is this field of researches. The social coherence and international success of the British street artists in the institutions and on the art market raise new questions concerning their...

In the contemporary art era, artists are using a vast range of mediums and strategies, which are pushing the boundaries of art. By borrowing concepts, copying, or playing on the notion of copy, artists and their art are often raising concerns with the general public as well as within the artistic community....

This Master Dissertation is intended to offer a new perspective to the current predomination discourse in Spain's contemporary art sector. The hit of the economic crisis in 2008 in Spain has brought dramatic structural readjustments to the sector, in form of drastic cuts in public funding and a harming increase in...
'The recent inclusion of Brazil in the Art Newspaper surveys reflects the rise of a prosperous middle class, a wave of museum-building following an economic boom and more media attention on the arts'. Brazil has been under the spotlights for the last couple of years. The artists are on the map, fairs are attracting...

Contemporary art  market has becoma a "Global Economy" with the regionalization playing an important role. With the surprising performance of Chinese contemporary art in the global art market recent these years,the art itself is enthusiastically being promoted by the new generations in the important market,...

This dissertation examines the influence of the spectacle and the rise of entertainment culture on the practice of contemporary sculpture. Since the 1950s,and increasingly in the twenty-first century, an ever-growing interest for monumental and large-scale art is palpable. In the legacy of the artwork...

The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of the market on visual art-based collective purpose. The subjects of this study were five established and still in activity visual art based collectives i.e. the Guerilla Girls, Gelitin, Superflex, The Raqs Media Collectiveand Slavs and Tatars. The first part...

Contemporary artists find particular empathy with the belief that we ceaselessly recreate our own classification systems. The display of randomized collections in the form of wunderkammer -the cabinets of curiosity created by early natural philosophers- is a favoured way of demonstrating a delight in...

The main object of this research is to understand the timeline variables of theFisher's private art collection colliding in a partnership with San Francisco Museum of Art. Laying out the pieces of the Fisher's involvement on a private level in San Francisco, and the involvement of SFMoMA in the community as well....

The nature and means of museums have been described from multiple angles - artistic, cultural and social-. Instead, the understanding of the nature of house museums is still at its beginning.

What are essence, role, management and perspective development of these time capsules? Three case studies - Frederic...

How did the strong and controversial cultural management of John Szarkowski at MoMa affect the dissemination of photography and its collecting through the 70's in New York?

My contention...

This dissertation analysed five arts organisations in the MENA Region that have developed programming catered towards both local and global audiences. The five organisations discussed here are The Townhouse Gallery in Cairo Egypt; Ashkal Alwan in Beirut, Lebanon; L'Appartement 22 in Rabat, Morocco; Aria in Algiers,...

The recent decades have witnessed a profusion of large, signature designed modern and contemporary art museums. The leaders of this movement have adapted their interior architecture to the new needs of this century; to impress and dazzle with grand, bold, statement spaces. Emblem of the insitution and most daring...

While the developments of the Tate Gift have been narrated as part of the history of the Tate Gallery, the negotiations between Henry Tate and Her Majesty's Treasury under two governments have not received as much critical attention.

This dissertation wants to examine how these negotiations, which lasted for...

The increasing influence of collectors as tastemakers and legitimisers has opened up platforms to display their collections to the public shaped in museums. This type of museum can be seen as a distinctive institutional model by addressing the problematic around these entities as stakeholders within the art market...

The main questions, which this dissertation seeks to investigate, are, firstly, the nature of the Old Master Market and the location of the economic and aesthetic tensions within this market. Secondly, the dissertation explores how value is constructed amongst the various commercial participants in the Old Master...

The Louis Vuitton and Contemporary Art collaborations have been chosen as a case study for this dissertation, a commercial concept where Louis Vuitton has shown to be a pioneer in the Fashion Luxury Industry and presently continuing to build marketing campaigns with successive Contemporary Artists that are every...

In light of the radical economic, political and social changes occurring in China within the last couple of decades, the Chinese are undergoing complete re-identification. The new millionaires of this emerging superpower are using art acquisitions more and more as a means of representation. The question is, what...

The main aim of this study is to ascertain whether the unregulated status of the UK art market is still viable, or whether UK legislation should be amended to control the sale of artworks. This question arose from the author’s interest in intellectual property legislation in the United Kingdom, as related to the...

This study will argue the evolution of the manufactory during the early period(1897- 1905) since Sandier arrived Sèvres through the results after the Exposition Universelle 1900, as well as through the sales record to exam whether there was a financial success. As the vase was the emphatic object which the...

Bardini’s showroom/museum display had an important aesthetic and commercial purpose. The use of the colour blue as a background of the entire display in relation to works of art, light and architecture were the main features. This colour has become an issue of interest in Bardini’s lifetime and in the years that...

This dissertation discusses the French resident collectors and trends in the collecting of British art in France from the time of the Salon Britannique in 1824 through the end of the nineteenth century. A brief discussion of the changes in the French art market during the Restoration demonstrates the...

The Object of this research is to understand the reasons for and the implications of the growth of collecting contemporary art by women on the global art market. It firstly frames this phenomenon within an historical context, looking at when and where it’s happening. Following this, four interviews have been made...

Along the following dissertation, I will attempt to offer fresh insights and interpretations of the relationship between the Russian tycoon Sergei Shchukin and the artist Henry Matisse. In interpreting the background to this project, I noticed three key themes that may sustain the main issue I am raising: first,...

The recent rediscovery of the largest group of Rembrandt’s copperplates put together in the eighteenth century when Pierre-Francois Basan purchased Claude-Henri Watelet’s collection aroused interesting issues regarding the building of specialist knowledge. The value of Rembrandt’s copperplates was defined by the...

The purpose of this paper is to examine an ambivalence in the Contemporary Art market in the scope of financial investments. The recent remarkable development of contemporary art has raised the attention on “new buyers” also known as investors.

The aim of this paper is to...

The main questions, which this dissertation seeks to investigate, are, firstly, the nature of the Old Master Market and the location of the economic and aesthetic tensions within this market. Secondly, the dissertation explores how value is constructed amongst the various commercial participants in the Old Master...

While French eighteenth-century furniture and decoration was well present in the nineteenth century was strong but few examples have been analyzed in the existing literature regarding the history of collecting. In particular, the British and cosmopolitan plutocrats who collected French items in Mayfair in the late...

This paper examines the relationship between the explosion of manifold new media inventions and the role of Contemporary Art in influencing politico-societal developments, with particular reference to the Arab Spring uprisings and their manifestation in the state of Egypt. The investigation studies whether the...

The idea of the present study of Hieronymus Bosch’s painting was determined by a visit to the Petworth House where I saw the picture The Adoration of the Kings (c.1495) I was already very interested in the heritage of this painter and was familiar with his work. At that time I was sure...

The purpose of the following research is to explore a selection of private and public initiatives for the promotion of French Contemporary Art, their reception and impact on the contemporary art market since 2000. The study is based mainly on a 2001 Government report by the...

The purpose of this dissertation is to subjectively investigate the current market condition of European furniture in China. As Chinese art collector base grows in burgeoning rate, these collectors' taste also expended into new field. Besides Chinese domestic art works, European furniture has made several...

In early 1918, towards the end of the First World War, Charles J. Holmes, Director of the National Gallery, London, was confronted with the opportunity to purchase modern French artworks at the Studio Sales of Edgar Degas. Never before had funding directly from the Treasury been...

Undoubtedly, literature on eighteenth century Sèvres porcelain would fill several bookcases, but as far as general surveys are concerned, few cover genuinely the particular subject of ground colors, whose definition is frequently relegated to the glossary (see Appendix I).

Hence, this study started with an...

Walking through trendy Saint-Germain des Pres in Paris, one might find himself on the Place Furstenberg and be surprised that peace and quiet still reigns there, as if time had stopped. One could even be curious enough to enter the number 6, Delacroix’s last residence, now a National Museum devoted to the artist’s...

The reception of Kandinsky in England remains a subject that has been underexplored by historians. Nothing has ever been written about the collection of the first English patrons of Kandinsky, Sir Ernest Michael Sadler and his son Michael Thomas Sadler.

This dissertation will analyse the hostile reception of...

The dissertation begins with a summary of some major points in the history of African contemporary art, before proceeding in the literature review to a profile of Jean Pigozzi and his collection. The paper then goes on to examine the characteristics of the collection using the available secondary literature as...

Collecting is an authentic act of artistic creation. Therefore, collectors should be scrutinized in the same way as artists: their motivations, habits, and personalities should be analyzed. This dissertation will focus on the figure of a collector Pierre Jourdan-Barry. The process of collecting and relationship to...

The notion of performativity has been addressed increasively since performance art developed in the end of the 1950’s. Following cycles and trends, the notion has attained a peak in the 1990’s, often linked to the wave of social interactive works, where the principle of interactivity was appearing as central....

Reflecting the politics of a global art world in constant expansion, biennials and similar large-scale perennial exhibition have become a central node in the display, discussion and distribution of contemporary art practices. As legitimating authorities, they have been and still are instrumental in the...

The presence of credit institutions in Italy could be dated back to the XIII century. From the earliest times they started receiving works of art as debt settlement and in this way they came to own prestigious collections of masterpieces. These art collections, therefore, has lacked of Animus since they were...

Design art is a very thought-provoking phenomenon, a fresh practice embedded in the flourishing discipline of design, combining functional attributes with the high aesthetic standards of the art market.

At the dawn of design art in the early 1980s, Britain was the world hub of innovation and influential...

The figure of Baron Carlo Marochetti provides a breeding ground for interesting researches and interconnections within the rich collecting network in London in the second half of the nineteenth century.  

Marochetti’s originality and his approach to the...

A genuine interest in the historic interior has led me to conduct a study of the early twentieth-century interior in the town of Ålesund, Norway. The history of interiors has not received much scholarly attention in Norwegian circles, and hence this dissertation seeks to unfold the layers of...

This paper was motivated by the cultural shock received from my personal experience in the Indonesian art scene in 2010. While collecting Indonesian art becomes more and more heated at auction in Hong Kong, it has barely become known outside of Southeast Asia. This study inquires into the distinctive features of...