Joseph Nathan Cohen

Department of Sociology, CUNY Queens College, New York, NY

Academic Art

Generating images in the style of academic art.

This post is an installment in the Generative AI Art Style series, a practical knowledge project designed to help content creators fine-tune the aesthetics of their generated images by references to and descriptions of popular art styles.  Click here to read more on the project.

Click here to learn about this project

Click here for this style’s Wikipedia page

Generated Thick Descriptor:

Academic art, also known as academicism, is a style typically seen in the 19th-century artworks influenced by European academies of art. Visually, its key features include a high level of detail, idealized aesthetics, and a focus on historical or mythological subjects. The style harnesses elements of Neoclassicism and Romanticism, often depicting grand history or narrative scenes. To create academic art, one should strive for precision, emphasizing anatomical accuracy and realistic portrayal of light and color. Classicizing ideals that evoke old or exotic historical themes are favored.

The table below depicts New York City’s Times Square and Northern Ontario’s Lake Kenogamissi. The left column shows the results of a “thin” prompt, in which the style was requested in name only. The right column shows the results of a “thick” prompt, in which the generated prompt was used.

  Thin Thick
Times Square

These images show what Generative AI renders when one requests that an image be rendered in well-known art styles. This series does not purport to describe major art styles as understood in the art scholarship community. If you have expertise in art and want to explain why these images do or do not capture the essence of these fields, then please do so in the comments section below.