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The historical past of artwork is a self-discipline whose object of research is artwork and its growth and evolution all through the historical past of humanity.

As a basic rule, the historical past of artwork doesn’t research all inventive disciplines, however solely the upper arts, additionally known as high-quality arts (portray, sculpture, structure, music, dance, literature), excluding the so-called minor or utilized arts, similar to craftsmanship, design and composition.

The origin of the humanities is unsure and implies not solely aesthetics but in addition the notice of making a murals. Some artwork historians have outlined the cradle of the beginning of artwork within the Chauvet cave , the place the oldest cave portray found is positioned, relationship from roughly 30,000 years in the past.

Subsequently, historians classify artwork by intervals, which in flip are divided into kinds and, at the moment, artwork is thought by faculties and inventive currents.

On this sense, rock artwork can be the primary type of artwork. Then, there are the humanities that emerged from the traditional civilizations earlier than the autumn of the Roman Empire (476 BC) such because the artwork in Egypt, India, Persia, Armenia, China, Historic Greece and Historic Rome.

From the fifth century, when the Center Ages started, the kinds and their influences are extra outlined, as proven within the following desk.

Artwork timeline

Under is a really basic abstract of crucial arts and inventive currents by historic interval:


  • Paleolithic : Cave work
  • Mesolithic: Cave Work
  • Neolithic: Megalithic structure, ceramics, statuary.

Outdated age

  • Mesopotamia
    • Sumerian, Akkadian and Neo-Sumerian interval
    • paleobabylonian interval
    • Assyrian interval
    • Neo-Babylonian interval
  • Historic Egypt Outdated Kingdom
    • center kingdom
    • new empire
    • late interval
    • Greco-Roman domination
  • classical antiquity
    • Historic Greece
      • archaic artwork
      • traditional artwork
      • hellenistic artwork
    • Historic Rome
      • Roman artwork

Center Ages

  • Excessive Center Ages
    • pale christian artwork
    • byzantine artwork
    • germanic artwork
    • pre-romanesque artwork
    • islamic artwork
    • Romanesque artwork
  • Center Ages
    • Carolingian artwork.
    • Romanesque artwork.
    • Gothic artwork

Trendy age

  • Renaissance
    • Renaissance artwork
    • Mannerism
  • Baroque
    • baroque artwork
    • rococo artwork

Modern age

  • Modernity – 2nd half of the 18th century
    • neoclassicism
    • Romanticism
  • Modernity – nineteenth century
    • Realism
    • Naturalism
    • Symbolism
    • Impressionism
    • Postimpressionism
    • Modernism or Artwork Nouveau
  • First half of the twentieth century (first wave of avant-gardes):
    • Expressionism
    • Fauvism
    • Cubism
    • Futurism
    • summary artwork:
      • lyrical abstraction
      • Suprematism
      • constructivism
      • neoplasticism
    • Dadaism
    • Surrealism
    • artwork deco
  • Second half of the twentieth century (second wave of avant-garde)
    • informalism
    • new figuration
    • Op artwork or kinetic artwork
    • Pop artwork or pop artwork
    • new realism
    • Motion artwork (Occurring, efficiency, set up, and many others.)
    • arte povera
    • minimalism
    • hyperrealism
    • Conceptual artwork
  • XX-XXI century:
    • Modern artwork
    • postmodern artwork

On this manner, the historical past of artwork not solely research the completely different inventive manifestations, but in addition establishes periodizations (prehistoric, historical, classical, medieval, trendy, up to date), classifies kinds (Gothic, baroque, neoclassical, and many others.), and delimits actions. , developments and faculties (romanticism, symbolism, expressionism, dadaism, surrealism, and many others.).