Academic art was an artistic style that was popular from the 17th to the 19th century. Different art schools laid down rules on what a good painting or artwork shouls look like. Academic art was influenced by these rules, and was about applying them when creating a work of art. Academic art is a form of Realism in art. One of the main ideas that influenced academic art was that of Aristotle: A work of art should give a selective, but true copy of a part of reality. This idea was transformed into the concept of mimesis, or imitation. Together with thisidea, there were a number of subjects that were acceptable for painting or sculpture. Very often, the subjects came from mythology
With later art styles, especially that of impressionism, academic art losts its importance.