Timeline of Art Movements

It was mentioned to me a little while back that I often speak about the movements that works of art fall in and attempt to explain them but it is sometimes hard to figure out exactly what the chronological order of the movements is and how the progression happened. With that in mind I found a website that displays a chronological progression and is easily accessible and readable to even those who are not looking for long, convoluted and technical explanations but rather a brief overview and dates.


I have made a list, however, of the major movements and included their dates and some artists that fall into that category. If you would like more information please email me or you can utilize the site I have attached. Also, if you feel I made a mistake and want to add your two cents please comment below. I think the sharing of information is important and if my thinking is flawed I want to know the facts!


Ancient & Classical Art (15000 BC / 400 BC-200AD / 350 AD-450AD)
- Greek, Roman, Pre-Historic, Sumerian, Japanese, etc.

Medieval & Gothic Art (400 – 1200 AD)
- Manuscript Illumination
- Romanesque and Gothic Architecture (ex. Chartes Cathedral)

Early Renaissance, Italian (1200 – c.1399)
- Cimabue, Giotto, Masachio, Botticelli

Renaissance, Northern
- Jan van Eyck, Rogier van der Weyden, Albrect Durer, the Bruegels

Late/High Renaissance, Italian (1400 – c. 1520)
- Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Titian

Mannerism (c. 1520 – c. 1580)
- Andrea del Sarto, Pontormo, Parmigiano, Rosso Fiorentino, El Greco

Baroque (late 16th to early 18th century)
- Caravaggio, Orazio and Artemisia Gentileschi

Rococo (18th century)
- Boucher, Fragonard

Neo-Classical (after 1765)
- Jacques-Louis David

Romanticism (late 18th century and early 19th)
- Turner, Goya, GĂ©ricault, Delacroix, Caspar David Friedrich, Henry Fuseli

Pre-Raphaelites, British (began 1848 – 1920’s)
- Dante Gabriel Rossetti, William Holman Hunt, John Everett Millias

Arts & Crafts Movement, began in Britian (1880-1910)

Realism (1830-1870)
- Gustave Courbet, Millet, Honore Daumier, Corot, Whistler, Sargeant

Impressionism (1867-1886)
- Monet, Manet, Degas, Pissaro, Renoir, Morisot

Symbolism (1885-1910)
- Gustav Klimt, Edvard Munch, Gustave Moreau

Post-Impressionism (1880-1920)
- Cezanne, van Gogh, Rodin, Modigliani, Seurat, Gaugin, Toulouse-Latrec

Art Nouveau (late 1880s)
- Klimt, Alphonse Mucha, Gaudi, Toulouse-Latrec

Expressionism (1905-1925)
- Egon Schiele, Kirchner, Marc Chagall, Edvard Munch

Fauvism (1905-1908)
- Matisse, Derain

Der Blaue Reiter (c. 1911)
- Franz Marc, Kandinsky

Cubism (1908-1919)
- Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Juan Gris, Ferdinand Leger

Dada (1916-1920s)
- Arp, Andre Breton, Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, Hannah Hoch, Kurt Schwitters

Futurism (c. 1909 – c. 1920’s)
- Umberto Boccioni, Severini, Calla, Balla, Marinetti

Bauhaus (1919-1930s)
- Walter Gropius, Paul Klee

Surrealism (1920-1930s)
- Dali, Magritte, Max Ernst, Miro, Duchamp, O’Keefe

Constructivism, Russian (1915-1940’s)
- Malevich, Kandinsky, Tatlin

Abstract Expressionism (1940-1960’s)
- Jackson Pollack, Mark Rothko, William de Kooning, Gorky

Pop Art (1950-1960’s)
- Warhol, Hockney, Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Lichtenstein, Jeff Koons

Minimalism (c. 1950’s – 70’s)
- Frank Stella, Ellsworth Kelly

Neo-Expressionism (c. 1980’s)
- Julian Schnabel, Anselm Kiefer

Post-Modernism (1960-present)
- Donald Judd, etc.

It is very true that every person has their own ideas about the exact dates of each of these movements. I have attempted here to give a VERY cursory overview of the progression of art movements in Western Art. Many movements are missing but I believe that is a good basic timeline and one that will help any one who is not an art historian better understand how things progressed. As you can see by the dates many movements overlapped. If you have any questions, please email me and I hope this list puts some what we have been looking at in a chronological order.


Suggested Reading: Books About Art, Individuals, and The Markets That Bring Them Together

So this week is kind of a big deal, Friday will be the 50th post! In light of this, I decided I work spice things up a bit by doing some new things this week. Today I am posting on a few books that revolve around the visual arts but are very reader friendly and can teach one a ton about art, its markets, and the some people that inhabit the art world, past and present. Some are more inspirational than others, and some are downright depressing when one realizes how absolutely subjective the art markets are. However, for anyone who is reading this blog because they want to learn more about the visual arts then here is some suggested reading to do whenever you have time. I know the second I graduate I am finally getting to a whole other stack of books that have been sitting, waiting, while I finish school. If anyone else has books to add, please comment below or email me @ theartdaily@gmail.com. Many of the readers of this blog are art historians or collectors themselves and I would love to know what YOU are reading. I have included my favorite one or two books in each category, and if you would like more please let me know!!

Artist's Biographies:

John Richardson's A Life of Picasso (in three parts)
1. A Life of Picasso: The Prodigy, 1881-1906
2. A Life of Picasso: The Cubist Rebel, 1907-1916
3. A Life of Picasso: The Triumphant Years, 1917-1932
-> the definitive books on this incredible master, written by his close friend John Richardson. For anyone who wants to know everything there is to know about Picasso's life, loves, art and politics. An incredible read. I wish each of my favorite artist's had such a biographer.

Books about the Current Art Market and Industry:

Don Thompson's The $12 Million Stuffed Shark: The Curious Economics of Contemporary Art (2008: Palgrave Macmillan)
This book uses Damien Hirst's work The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living (1993) to attempt to explain the economics that make the contemporary art market so volatile and elitist. Thompson does a phenomenal job explaining the different sectors of the market from the different tiers of dealers, to the backroom of auction houses, and to the ever-proliferating art fairs all over the world. The book reads like a thriller, I could not put it down. As someone who has spent much time learning about art movements in the past, to understand the marketing strategies of art that is being produced now was a new experience and I am glad Thompson was one of my introductions to the form and the market.

Sarah Thorton's Seven Days in the Art World (2009: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.)
A trip through different aspects of the art world (museums, auctions, dealers, art magazines, art critics, art prizes), Thorton's book is very much a light read that at times makes good points. For an overview of some of the many aspects of this multi-faceted industry it is a good quick read that I recommend for its more in-depth interviews with artists and individuals on the inside.

Art World Individuals:

Thomas Hoving's Making the Mummies Dance: Inside The Metropolitan Museum Of Art (1994: Simon & Schuster)
Written by the late former Director of the Metropolitan Museum, this autobiographical romp through the upper echelons of society and the highest tiers of museum administration is at once hilarious and sobering. By sheer force of will, and obviously exaggerated manipulation tactics, Hoving helped to build the Met as we see it today. From the blockbuster exhibitions that draw crowds to the museum to the huge banners that proclaim them, Hoving was there and he probably brought it about. Also discusses some of the largest scandals to have hit the museum, such as the looted Krater that had to be returned because of illegal obtainment. A really enjoying read, sadly the author passed very recently but this book has had a bit of a re-birth in popularity because of it.

Art Collections and Collecting:

Cynthia Saltzman's Old Masters, New World: America's Raid on Europe's Great Pictures (2008: Penguin Group)
Fabulous book on how two men, Lord Joseph Duveen and Bernard Berenson were able to make the immensely wealthy covet European Old Master paintings to the point of addiction. Part art history, part gossip column from the Gilded Age, this book is hard to put down and will make you look at every work in the Frick Museum and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in a new, fascinated, light. Also discusses how many of these great European art works later ended up in the Metropolitan Museum due to many of these collectors positions on its Board of Trustees, and the formation of those offices.

Art in World War II Europe:

Lynn H. Nicholas' The Rape of Europa : The Fate of Europe's Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War (1995:Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)
Chronicles many of the world's most famous works of art and their journeys during this turbulent time. Includes portraits of the leading figures in the controversies from Goering to Gertrude Stein and everything between.