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Department of the Visual Arts

Chair

  • Matthew Jesse Jackson

Professors

  • Theaster Gates
  • Laura Letinsky, Cinema and Media Studies
  • William Pope.L
  • Jessica Stockholder

Associate Professors

  • Matthew Jesse Jackson, Art History
  • Jason Salavon
  • Catherine Sullivan

Assistant Professors

  • Julia Phillips
  • Heather Kai Smith, Harper Schmidt Fellow

Professor of Practice in the Arts

  • Geof Oppenheimer

Visiting Professor

  • David Schutter (visiting Winter 2021)

Lecturers

  • Chris Bradley
  • Bethany Collins
  • Katherine Desjardins
  • Amber Ginsburg
  • Ellie Hogeman
  • Nicole Mauser
  • Scott Wolniak

Affiliates

  • Dominique Bluher, Cinema and Media Studies
  • Seth Brodsky, Music
  • Bill Brown, English
  • Darby English, Art History
  • Judy Hoffman, Cinema and Media Studies
  • W. J. T. Mitchell, English, Art History
  • D.N. Rodowick, Cinema and Media Studies

Emeritus Faculty

  • Charles Cohen, Art History
  • Herbert George
  • Elizabeth Helsinger, English, Art History
  • Vera Klement
  • Thomas Mapp
  • Robert C. Peters

The Department of Visual Arts (DoVA), a department within the Humanities Division at the University of Chicago, and situated in The Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, is proud to offer a Masters of Fine Arts.

This MFA program is distinguished in its focused attention on understanding how the pluralism of today’s art making practices relate to one another and in creating conversations that bridge between DoVA and other areas of study at the University of Chicago. Our faculty are diverse in their interests, deeply engaged with their own work, and are committed teachers engaged in a lively and sustained dialogue within the department.

Our students work in sculpture, photography, painting, installation, performance, video and new media. Students are admitted to the program based on the quality of the portfolio and the level of interest and capacity in engaging this interdisciplinary program within a university environment. The faculty focus on working with students to develop their own work and enabling them to leave the University with the tools to support a lifetime of art making. As part of this process, the department encourages students to explore not only the artistic issues pertinent to their work, but also the theoretical, social and historical issues that intersect and bracket it.

The MFA is a two-year program (six quarters), comprised of 18 courses. Many of these course credits are earned through the development of individual work in conversation with the faculty.

First and second year students work together to articulate their work and to sharpen their skills of critical thinking and writing. Students come to the program with diverse intellectual, cultural and artistic backgrounds and different art making practices. We all work together to articulate a common language with which to discuss and make art in this critical and supportive community.

As part of the MFA program, DoVA hosts a lively visiting artist program under the auspices of the Open Practice Committee (OPC). In addition the University of Chicago provides an enormously rich intellectual environment full of engaging lectures and workshops in all areas of study. Our students are often interested in events hosted by the Center for Gender Studies, the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture, the Mass Culture Studies Workshop, the Department of Cinema and Media Studies, and the Department of Art History. The university also offers workshops that focus on professional and pedagogical issues to assist students in preparing for a career in the arts. Please see our website for more information.

Curriculum

MFA students register for 300 credits (three courses at 100 credits each) per quarter. A total of 1800 credits, or eighteen courses, is required for the degree.

The basic requirements for the MFA are listed below:

1. Graduate Studio Project (9 Courses / 900 Credit Hours)

Students receive course credit for time spent in their studio developing their work. As part of this requirement students will present work to faculty and students for critique regularly throughout the year. Students register for at least 100 credit hours of Graduate Studio Project (ARTV 40000) per quarter, and may register for up to 300 hours per quarter provided that they are on track for meeting their other course requirements (see Graduate Seminars and Electives).

2. Graduate Seminars (3 Courses / 300 Credit Hours)

In order to provide a core of common intellectual experience, all students are required to take three quarters of the Graduate Seminar in Visual Arts (ARTV 39200) during their first year. The content of these seminars varies with instructors, but may focus on many different issues in contemporary theory and criticism.

3. Electives (6 Courses / 600 Credit Hours)

Students are required to take six graduate-level electives. At least three of the six electives must either be academic (i.e. non-studio based) or originate in departments outside of DoVA.

4. Thesis Presentation

In the fall quarter of the second year, each student will work with a committee of two faculty members who assist in the preparation of the thesis work. In the final quarter of the program each degree candidate presents studio work in an MFA exhibition. In addition to this exhibition, students will be expected to submit a short but focused written abstract of their work.

5. Standards Of Performance

Each graduate student must maintain high standards of engagement and achievement in studio and academic performance, including evidence of substantial growth in their work.

For additional information, please email dova@uchicago.edu or visit our website.

How to Apply

The application process for admission and financial aid for all graduate programs in the Humanities is administered through the divisional Office of the Dean of Students. The Application for Admission and Financial Aid, with instructions, deadlines and department specific information is available online at: http://humanities.uchicago.edu/students/admissions.html.  

Questions pertaining to admissions and aid should be directed to humanitiesadmissions@uchicago.edu or (773) 702-1552.

International students must provide evidence of English proficiency by submitting scores from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). (Current minimum scores, etc., are provided with the application.) For more information, please see the Office of International Affairs website, or call them at (773) 702-7752.

Additional information about financial aid and the admissions process can be found on the DoVA website.

Visual Arts Courses

ARTV 30008. Ways of Curating and Collecting. 100 Units.

This seminar takes stock of contemporary currents in curating and collecting practices at a time when we are experiencing rapid expansion of the museum sector internationally, and witnessing the growing ubiquity of "curation" within the spheres of leisure, culture, entertainment and tourism. Using institutions across campus, the city of Chicago and beyond as our primary locus, we will explore curatorial and collecting strategies employed by a variety of visual arts institutions and platforms from the scale of the single-room/single curator gallery, to the museum and the international biennial. We will consider how curatorial and exhibition-making practices have evolved from the latter half of the 20th century to the present day. We will consider the socio-cultural and political implications of curatorial work, and reflect on the shifting status of the art object within collecting and non-collecting institutions. Together we will explore significant curatorial projects at a local, national and international level; we will undertake site visits as well as play host to visiting curators, artists and thinkers. Course readings will feature the writings of seminal international curators as well as selections from historians and theorists in the field of curatorial studies. Students will work through a series of independent and collaborative assignments as well as a final project that integrates curatorial theory and practice.

Instructor(s): Y. Umolu     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 36110, ARTV 20008, ARTH 26110

ARTV 30019. Topics in Painting. 100 Units.

Discussion based seminar on issues in contemporary and historical painting. Seminar format open to DoVA majors and minors, DoVA MFAs, and MA students in MAPH. This class can be counted as a studio class toward the DoVA major or minor with consent of instructor.

Instructor(s): D. Schutter     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 20019

ARTV 30140. Aesthetic Ecologies. 100 Units.

What would an intellectual history of the environment look like when told from the perspective of the literature of art history? The geographer Friedrich Ratzel, who first began using the term "Umwelt" ("environment") in a systematic way, claimed that, up to the end of the 19th century, the idea of environment had been primarily discussed not in scientific contexts but rather in aesthetic ones, by "artistically predisposed thinkers." In this course, we will take Ratzel's claim seriously and aim to recuperate the aesthetic side of theories of environment across diverse areas such as: notions of landscape ("the picturesque"); aesthetic and biological theories of milieu (Haeckel's "ecology," Taine's "milieu," Uexküll's "Umweltlehre"); Warburg's cultural history; the "sculpture of environment" (Boccioni); the "space-body" in modern dance (Laban); artworks-as-environments in spatial installations. This course is about artworks that continue beyond their material confines into the space environing them. We will focus on evocations of air as the material space surrounding an artwork in texts that thematize the continuity between artwork as image and material object. Additional materials include: J.W. v. Goethe, Jacob Burckhardt, Carl Justi, Adolf v. Hildebrand, Camillo Sitte, Alois Riegl, R.M. Rilke, M. Heidegger, and others.

Instructor(s): Margareta Ingrid Christian     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Open to all students. MAPH students welcome. Interested undergraduates please email instructor:michristian@uchicago.edu.
Equivalent Course(s): GRMN 35140

ARTV 30805. Framing, Re-framing, and Un-framing Cinema. 100 Units.

By cinema, we mean the art of the moving image, which is not limited to the material support of a flexible band called film. This art reaches back to early devices to trick the eye into seeing motion and looks forward to new media and new modes of presentation. With the technological possibility of breaking images into tiny pixels and reassembling them and of viewing them in new way that this computerized image allows, we now face the most radical transformation of the moving image since the very beginnings of cinema. A collaboration between the OpenEndedGroup (Marc Downie and Paul Kaiser), artists who have created new modes of the moving image for more than decade, and film scholar Tom Gunning, this course will use this moment of new technologies to explore and expand the moving image before it becomes too rigidly determined by the powerful industrial forces now propelling it forward. This course will be intensely experimental as we see how we might use new computer algorithms to take apart and re-experience classic films of the past. By using new tools, developed for and during this class, students will make new experiences inside virtual reality environments for watching, analyzing, and recombining films and that are unlike any other. These tools will enable students, regardless of previous programming experience, to participate in this crucial technological and cultural juncture.

Equivalent Course(s): CMST 27805, CMST 37805, ARTV 20805

ARTV 31002. Life Drawing. 100 Units.

This course is designed to introduce the student to observational drawing of the human figure. The subject of the course will be the live nude model. The object of the course is to see through proportions and the anatomy of the human body and draw out a likeness, rendering present the body as seen in its materiality, its structure, its finitude. Lectures on anatomy and the history of drawing will be ongoing and stitched into this studio course, as will the critique of drawings generated in class.

Instructor(s): D. Schutter     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21002

ARTV 31007. Drawing the Anthropocene. 100 Units.

The anthropocene is linked to the concept of acceleration through human intervention that alters our systems on a planetary scale. Acceleration accurately connotes the pace of radical behavioral and political shifts we are experiencing from Covid-19 and our current political uprising. Looking at these instances of quick change allows us to examine anthropogenic shifts as right here in our everyday lives. This course takes walking as a measure of inquiry into anthropogenic change as intimate, experienced through the body and space, not way-out-there, but all around us, and uses art as a measure that releases us from the strictly empirical to include the somatic, emotional, philosophical, lyrical, and the humorous. Drawing is a haptic practice, through the hand, that can represent people and things, real and imagined, as well as a method to create a plan or sketch. Taking walking as a point of departure, and using the GPS in our phones, we will begin to draw lines of connection between what is beneath our feet, around us, and above, to make connections between the abstraction of the anthropocene and our lived lives. While drawing is a component of this course, drawing is also engaged as a metaphor, to draw up, to draw out, to illustrate, demonstrate and give form. This class with work towards three artworks/propositions loosely categorized as, the biological, the political and the geological.

Instructor(s): A. Ginsburg     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21007

ARTV 31008. Outside: An Archival Impulse. 100 Units.

In "An Archival Impulse," Hal Foster describes the archive as "found yet constructed, factual yet fictive, public yet private." Foster's set of tangled binaries provides a foundation on which to build a formal and critical inquiry into the impulses of archiving and the production of archive-driven artwork. What is preserved and what is not is inherently political. Taking to the streets, we will look closely at the flora and fauna and what we term physical and cultural as sites of collection to then sort, instrumentalizing the impulse to preserve as a tool to frame what we have termed outside. Classes will be divided between mapped walks, site visits, dérives (drifts) and online discussions of readings, artist presentations, and technical instruction that supports projects. All projects will be presented digitally or out of doors. During this three week intensive course, we will produce three artworks/propositions. Taking up an archival strategy, we will produce a project. Thereafter, the subsequent projects will pivot, take a new form and new content based on an adaptation from the ideas in the readings. The suite of three works will not necessarily form a whole, rather a prism from which to unpack and explore the world around us.

Instructor(s): A. Ginsburg     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21008

ARTV 31501. Introduction to Printmaking. 100 Units.

An introduction to basic printmaking techniques, including monoprint, intaglio (drypoint), planographic, and relief printing. Printmaking will be explored as a "bridge medium": a conduit between drawing, painting, and sculpture. Emphasis will be placed upon investigating visual structures through "calculated spontaneity" and "controlled accidents," as well as on the serial potential inherent in printmaking, as opposed to the strictly technical aspects of this medium.

Instructor(s): K. Desjardins     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21501

ARTV 31502. Advanced Printmaking. 100 Units.

ARTV 21501 is required as a prerequisite. Course description coming soon.

Instructor(s): K. Desjardins     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300 and ARTV 21501
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21502

ARTV 31702. Drawing Concepts. 100 Units.

This course will focus on expanding the definition and practice of drawing. Studio work will engage traditional, spatial and process-oriented mark making in order to materialize thematically driven projects. Emphasis will be placed equally on the formal concerns of subject, material, and technique as well as the ability to effectively convey one's concept. Projects will include weekly and longer-term assignments, in addition to critique. Participation in field trips is required.

Instructor(s): B. Collins     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21702

ARTV 31800. Studio Practice. 100 Units.

This course considers a variety of methods, processes and media to explore conceptual issues pertinent to a contemporary art practice. Through research, material investigation, experimentation and revision, students will develop their own approach to a daily self-directed practice. Projects will include weekly and longer-term assignments, individual and collaborative work. We will also look at the practices of established artists for possible models. Participation in several field trips is required.

Instructor(s): B. Collins     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21800

ARTV 31902. Color: Theory and Experience. 100 Units.

This studio course proposes a hands-on investigation into the way we experience color in the world and in our own work. We will study a range of approaches to color, including: "haptic" color perception, Symbolic/Spiritual color theories, as well as more widely known theories of "optical color." In the studio, you will be introduced to a unique series of exercises that elucidate the expressive, symbolic, scientific, and cultural aspects of color perception using both acrylic pigment and light. Lectures, field trips, and guest speakers will broaden our discussion of color. A final project in a medium of your choice will serve as a culminating experience for the course.

Instructor(s): K. Desjardins     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 21902

ARTV 32000. Introduction to Sculpture. 100 Units.

This course introduces the technical fundamentals of sculptural practice. Using basic introductions to welding, basic woodworking and metal fabrication students will undertake assignments designed to deploy these new skills conceptually in their projects. Lectures and reading introduce the technical focus of the class in various historical, social and economic contexts. Discussions and gallery visits help engender an understanding of sculpture within a larger societal and historical context.

Instructor(s): C. Bradley     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300.
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22200

ARTV 32200-32202. Introduction to Painting I-II.

This studio course introduces students to the fundamental elements of painting (its language and methodologies) as they learn how to initiate and develop an individualized investigation into subject matter and meaning. This course emphasizes group critiques and discussion. Courses taught concurrently.

ARTV 32200. Introduction to Painting I. 100 Units.

This studio course introduces students to the fundamental elements of painting (its language and methodologies) as they learn how to initiate and develop an individualized investigation into subject matter and meaning. This course emphasizes group critiques and discussion.

Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22000

ARTV 32202. Introduction to Painting II. 100 Units.

No description available

Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22002

ARTV 32304. Ceramics: Image and Form. 100 Units.

Ceramics and painting have a long connected history. In Natural History (77-79 AD), Pliny the Elder attempts to trace the history of portraiture. Butades the potter, brokenhearted at the departure of his soon-to-be-married daughter, catches a glimpse of her profile on the wall from the reflection cast by a candle and traces the outline with some clay. In the retelling of this narrative, this act of doubling is attributed, variously, to the origin of portrait painting and to the origin of the portrait modeling, depending on the focus of the outline as an act done by a brush or the plastic actions of filling in the trace. While historically apocryphal, this account captures the historical dance between ceramics as a surface for painting and material to form shape. In this course, you will bring surface and form together to create a space and site of content. While using the inherently plastic nature of clay to create shape, the workshop format of this course will instrumentalize the surface to test and play with color and line. Thinking of ceramics as a flexible surface for archival paint, also known as glaze, this studio course will test glazes, oxides, decals, and multi-fired surfaces. Assignments will be geared towards experimental results that allow students to further their own interests and practices.

Instructor(s): A. Ginsburg     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22304

ARTV 32305. Performing Tableware. 100 Units.

Performing Tableware takes the actions and objects of the table as a site of research. Through demonstrations, readings and production, tableware will be considered in the context of contemporary practices in design, sculpture, installation and performance. Materially rooted in ceramics, this course gives students the opportunity to highlight, interrupt or subvert the patterns associated with sitting around table. Developing projects through a process of questioning behavior and the intimate functions of objects of the table, students will extend and challenge their material knowledge and engage in a range of ceramic processes including using raw clay, slip casting, hand building, slab building and multi-fire glaze processes.

Instructor(s): A. Ginsburg     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22305

ARTV 32312. Material as Performance. 100 Units.

This course delves into the use and practices around a broad range of materials and focuses on the intersection between culture, habit and performance. By examining the histories of specific materials in our present moment, during a time when we know that materials and resources are finite, we will think through our patterns and speculate on interactions with materials in the future. Materials offer us the opportunity to examine history through the lens of performance, questioning who and what is included in the these histories, all the while interrogating the inherent humantic lens. This studio course will be iterative, working towards large scale final projects.

Instructor(s): A. Ginsburg     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22312

ARTV 32317. Intuitive Form. 100 Units.

Taking the Rorschach Test as a point of departure, students will learn how to associate based on the "intuitive forms" they create serving as the "ambiguous stimulus". Learning perspective is to produce quickly and intuitively in two "immediate" materials: unfired clay and drawing. The making will take place in class as exercises, and most materials will be recycled to underline the focus on process instead of product. There will be short lectures throughout the quarter to discuss methods of association and interpretation, and to give an introduction to the Rorschach Test as a method of Psychoanalytic "Free Association". There will be written assignments and I am planning to invite a guest visitor from the Psychoanalytic Institute of Chicago.

Instructor(s): J. Phillips     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22317

ARTV 32500. Computational Imaging. 100 Units.

This studio course introduces fundamental tools and concepts used in the production of computer-mediated artwork. Instruction includes a survey of standard digital imaging software and hardware (i.e., Photoshop, scanners, storage, printing, etc.), as well as exposure to more sophisticated methods. We also view and discuss the historical precedents and current practice of media art. Using input and output hardware, students complete conceptually driven projects emphasizing personal direction while gaining core digital knowledge.

Instructor(s): J. Salavon     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): CMST 28800, MAAD 22500, ARTV 22500

ARTV 32501. Art & Machine Intelligence. 100 Units.

Artists have long used autonomous processes to aid in the creation of their work. From 18th century parlor games to contemporary visual culture, creators have applied stochastic methods, automation, and simulation to generate music, text, and imagery. In the last five years, as machine learning has matured into broadly applicable artificial intelligence, artists have turned towards neural networks as a new frontier for creative practice. This studio course will explore the history and uses of autonomous creative tools and focus, more specifically, on leading edge artistic applications of AI. Students will receive exposure to a breadth of methods in this domain and produce multiple projects engaged with these topics. Software development experience is not required, though it may be useful.

Instructor(s): J. Salavon     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 22501, MAAD 25201

ARTV 33801. Video. 100 Units.

This is a production course geared towards short experimental works and video within a studio art context.

Instructor(s): S. Wolniak     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 23801, MAAD 23801

ARTV 33804. Experimental Animation: Exploring Manual Techniques. 100 Units.

Individually directed video shorts will be produced in this intensive studio course. Experimental and improvised approaches to animation and motion picture art will focus on analog and material techniques, with basic digital post-production also being introduced. Early and experimental cinema, puppetry and contemporary low-tech animation will be presented as formal and technical examples.

Instructor(s): S. Wolniak     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): MAAD 23804, ARTV 23804

ARTV 33900. Drawing. 100 Units.

This intensive multilevel studio course is dedicated to investigations of genre, technique, and format in relation to subject matter and individual expression. Guided and self-directed experiments are used to develop visual work within conceptual and thematic frameworks. Art historical examples and contemporary strategies in two-dimensional art are presented as models. Students are expected to produce a body of work consisting of studies, sketches, and finished projects in a range of scales and materials. Classes are dedicated to studio work, lectures, critiques, and field trips.

Instructor(s): B. Collins     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 23900

ARTV 33920. Drawing II: Exploded Drawing. 100 Units.

This intensive studio course will explore wide-ranging strategies in drawing and two-dimensional composition. Interrogating conventions of representation and pictorial space, students will develop new formal and conceptual possibilities that relate to the complexities and changing perspectives of contemporary life. Drawing will be addressed as an expansive, open-ended outlet for thought and action. Emphasis will be on innovation within the fundamental structures of the medium, including its history, materials, and techniques.

Instructor(s): S. Wolniak     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 23920

ARTV 33930. Documentary Production I. 100 Units.

Documentary Video Production focuses on the making of independent documentary video. Examples of various modes of documentary production will be screened and discussed. Issues embedded in the genre, such as the ethics, the politics of representation, and the shifting lines between "the real" and "fiction" will be explored. Story development, pre-production strategies, and production techniques will be our focus, in particular-research, relationships, the camera, interviews and sound recording, shooting in available light, working in crews, and post-production editing. Students will work in crews and be expected to purchase a portable hard drive. A five-minute string-out/rough-cut will be screened at the end of the quarter. Students are strongly encouraged to take Doc Production 2 to complete their work.

Instructor(s): J. Hoffman     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): Prior or concurrent enrollment in CMST 10100 recommended for undergraduate students.
Equivalent Course(s): HMRT 35106, HMRT 25106, CMST 33930, MAAD 23930, ARTV 23930, CMST 23930

ARTV 33931. Documentary Production II. 100 Units.

Documentary Video Production II focuses on the shaping and crafting of a non-Fiction video. Enrollment will be limited to those students who have taken Documentary Production I. The class will discuss issues of ethics, power, and representation in this most philosophical and problematic of genres. Students will be expected to write a treatment outline detailing their project and learn about granting agencies and budgeting. Production techniques will concentrate on the language of handheld camera versus tripod, interview methodologies, microphone placement including working with wireless systems and mixers, and lighting for the interview. Post-production will cover editing techniques including color correction and audio sweetening, how to prepare for exhibition, and distribution strategies.

Instructor(s): J. Hoffman     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): CMST 23930, HMRT 25106, or ARTV 23930
Equivalent Course(s): HMRT 25107, CMST 23931, ARTV 23931, HMRT 35107, MAAD 23931, CMST 33931

ARTV 34000. Introduction to Black and White Film Photography. 100 Units.

Photography is a familiar medium due to its ubiquitous presence in our visual world, including popular culture and personal usage. In this course, students learn technical procedures and basic skills related to the 35mm camera, black and white film, and print development. They also begin to establish criteria for artistic expression. We investigate photography in relation to its historical and social context in order to more consciously engage the photograph's communicative and expressive possibilities. Course work culminates in a portfolio of works exemplary of the student's understanding of the medium. Field trips required.

Instructor(s): E. Hogeman     Terms Offered: Autumn Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300.
Note(s): Students need their own 35mm film camera. Some film and paper are provided, but students need to purchase additional supplies. More details will be provided on the first day of class and on Canvas.
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24000

ARTV 34004. Introduction to Color Photography. 100 Units.

Photography is a familiar medium due to its ubiquitous presence in our visual world, including popular culture and personal usage. We all have photographic habits and ample experience taking and consuming images. In this course, we will use photography as a means toward developing an aesthetic and theoretical language for creating art. Through readings, slideshows, and discussions, we will investigate color photography in relation to its historical and social context in order to more consciously engage the contemporary photograph's communicative and expressive possibilities. Students will be given constraint-driven assignments to help them unpack their habits and develop an understanding of the principles of photography and color editing workflows. Students are recommended to have their own DSLR camera with manual settings, but all camera formats are welcome.

Instructor(s): E. Hogeman     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24004

ARTV 34112. Advanced Problems in Sculpture. 100 Units.

This course is open to all manifestations of sculptural practice broadly defined, including performance and film/video. A particular focus of the course will be considering issues of presence/the index, material histories, economic determination, and societal legibility. Readings on sculptural history from the 19th through the 21st century will be used to illuminate contemporary concerns and issues.

Instructor(s): G. Oppenheimer     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300 and ARTV 22200 or consent of instructor.
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24112

ARTV 34122. Diasporic Practices in Contemporary Art. 100 Units.

The class will examine various phenomena of "Diasporic Practices in Contemporary Art", such as fragmented histories, the question of origin(ality), the limits of translation, social belonging and "the chosen family", and (over-)representation of origin. In class we will discuss readings by (a.o.) Grada Kilomba, Adrian Piper, Éduard Glissant, Langston Hughes, Trinh T. Minh-ha, and Hito Steyerl. Students will be asked to present on contemporary artists highlighting their diasporic strategies, while also producing creative works through assignments that employ diasporic strategies and that will be discussed in class.

Instructor(s): J. Phillips     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Note(s): Please email Julia Phillips juliaphillips@uchicago.edu with a brief description of how your work relates to a diasporic experience and/or your personal investment in the subject (150-300 words).
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 24122, CRES 24122, ARTV 24122, GNSE 28122, GNSE 38122

ARTV 34201. Collage. 100 Units.

This studio course explores collage as a means for developing content and examining complex cultural and material relationships. Projects and assigned texts outline the history of collage as a dynamic art form with a strong political dimension, as well as critically addressing how it is being used today.

Instructor(s): S. Wolniak     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24201

ARTV 34265. Best in Show: Art History as Exhibition History. 100 Units.

In this course, I propose a reading of post-war art history as seen, in part,through the periodical prism of one of the field's most important, signature events - the five-yearly Documenta exhibition in Kassel, Germany. Starting with the founding 1955 edition organized by Arnold Bode and ending with the 2017 edition which I worked on as a curator, we will discuss one chapter of Documenta's history per class alongside related events like the Venice and Sao Paulo biennials and Skulptur. Projekte Münster, touching upon such key issues of contemporary art practice and theory as the dynamics of globalization, identity politics, the vagaries of market influence, history and memory and the pressures of the social realm on aesthetic experience. As a history of exhibition making and curatorial practice, the course will also draw on recent developments in museum culture and the everyday politics of the art world's various institutions, and will be recounted in part from the perspective of exhibition-making experience. The class will consist of hands-on curatorial exercises, as well as writing and reading assignments that mirror and follow the 64-year arc of our historical periodization.

Instructor(s): D. Roelstraete     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): Students must attend first section to confirm enrollment.
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24265, ARTH 26791, ARTH 36791

ARTV 34301. Writing for Performance. 100 Units.

This course is an exploration of select texts for performance written by performance artists primarily but not entirely operating within the context of art. Via historical context and literary technique, students read, discuss, and analyze texts by various authors spanning the history of performance art: Hugo Ball, John Cage, Richard Foreman, Carolee Schneeman, Joseph Beuys, Karen Finley, Nature Theater of Oklahoma, John Leguizamo, and create and perform their own writing. Field trips and attendance at first class are required.

Instructor(s): Pope.L     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): TAPS 28414, ARTV 24301

ARTV 34403. Advanced Photography. 100 Units.

The goal of this course is to develop students' investigations and explorations in photography, building on beginning level experience and basic facility with this medium. Students pursue a line of artistic inquiry by participating in a process that involves experimentation, reading, gallery visits, critiques, and discussions, but mostly by producing images. Primary emphasis is placed upon the visual articulation of the ideas of students through their work, as well as the verbal expression of their ideas in class discussions, critiques, and artist's statements. As a vital component of articulating ideas and inquiry, students will refine their skills, e.g., black and white or color printing, medium or large format camera usage, or experimenting with light-sensitive materials.

Instructor(s): E. Hogeman     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300; and 24000.
Note(s): Camera and light meter required.
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24403

ARTV 34550. Shopcraft: Methods and Materials. 100 Units.

Designed as a complementary course to the DOVA sculpture sequence, Shopcraft explores the tools and techniques available to students in the wood shop. Topics covered include shop safety; the properties of woods; the planning and material selection process for sculpture, furniture, and other woodworking applications; the care and use of hand tools; and interpreting and creating scale drawings and conceptual plans. A series of small projects designed to challenge and expand students' design, drafting, and woodworking skills are assigned. In addition, students are invited to incorporate projects from sculpture classes or their individual studio practice into the course.

Instructor(s): D. Wolf     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24550

ARTV 34703. Mixed-Media Drawing: From Object to Concept. 100 Units.

An object of your choice will serve as a departure point for this process-oriented studio course that takes you through a sequenced exploration of a variety of mixed media drawing materials, methods, and approaches: from observation to abstraction-to the purely conceptual. Readings, critical writing, and discussion are intended to reinforce fluidity between theory, your ideas, and your art practice. This course is augmented by an image bank and gallery visits. Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300 Note(s): Open to all levels of experience.

Instructor(s): K. Desjardins     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Note(s): Open to all levels of experience.
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24703

ARTV 34707. Landscape Record. 100 Units.

Landscape Record (three-week intensive) is a project-oriented, mixed-media studio course conducted outdoors. Exploring material phenomena of the landscape, this course will draw on traditions of site-specific sculpture, land art and plein air painting, as well as contemplative activities like "slow looking" and Zen gardening. The immediate environment of the campus, the grounds of the Logan Center, and surrounding natural spaces will be explored and recorded through a variety of media including painting and drawing, sculpture, photography and video. Breaking from traditional observational approaches to landscape art, this course will focus on direct recording such as casting, rubbing, contact recording and intervention. The majority of studio work, technical instruction and material experimentation will occur in person, within class meetings, and be supplemented through ongoing independent sketchbook, reading and screening assignments.

Instructor(s): S. Wolniak     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 24707

ARTV 36206. Revised Ecologies for the Black Image. 100 Units.

A team-taught course with artist, Theaster Gates and art historian, Romi Crawford, "Valuations, Economies, and Revised Ecologies for the Black Image," is an investigation and inquiry into the challenges around black photographic image production. The course will require students to both examine and produce (on their own and with the faculty) strategies for making and interpreting contemporary art-- based on the urgent economic and affective needs (often obfuscated) of black photographic archives. Organized around practicums of research and making, students will be required to conduct interviews with artists and/or produce art works in collaboration with living artists and photographers. The course will allow students to work with faculty on producing outcomes in areas such as intergenerational collaboration, archival based art making, and "service oriented" art history; or one that pays attention to the affective realm of (often) very basic needs and desires of the black and minoritized artist. With students we will develop a process and method for locating and responding to these needs as an actionable part of art historical research and scholarship.

Instructor(s): R. Crawford, T. Gates     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): Students who wish to join Revised Ecologies for the Black Image should send a paragraph describing their interest in the topic to felicial@uchicago.edu. Graduate students and fourth-year undergraduates are especially encouraged to apply.
Equivalent Course(s): PPHA 36206, CRES 26210, ARTV 26206

ARTV 36210. XCAP: Food for Thought. 100 Units.

If anthropology and contemporary art have one thing in common, it is the aim to de-familiarize taken-for-granted ways of being in the world by means of ethnographic comparison or aesthetic provocation so as to open up new perspectives on the complexities of human social life. Co-taught by an artist and an anthropologist, this course considers what's at stake when contemporary artists build on this longstanding practice to explore the complexities of current societal, political, and cultural contexts.

Instructor(s): Laura Letinsky & Stephan Palmié      Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): for 3rd and 4th year students only
Equivalent Course(s): CMST 26210, KNOW 29942, ANTH 25315, CMST 36210, ANTH 35315, ARTH 29942, ARTV 26210

ARTV 36215. Comedy Central 2: The Body's Genres. 100 Units.

The story of comedy from the classics on focuses on the comedic as a weapon, as play that disrupts communication, and as a scene of moral revelation. This course will take up those relations, but begins with the body. We will focus on the plastic, corporeal, affective, and psychodramatic dynamics of the comedic. So much so, in fact, that we're calling it a studio seminar: it will involve actively participating in exercises adapted from the somatic arts, contemporary dance, music, theatre and contemporary comedy and developing new ones. Recognizing that bodies are as much created by movement as engendering it, and recognizing that the comedic is a register for translating the impact of other bodies including the world's body, the course will partition "the body" into focal themes such as: scale/gesture, the vocal grotesque/irony, movement/interruption, trauma/repair, slapstick/satire, ritual/convention, spontaneity/improvisation; cognitive laughter/belly laughter. Readings will include texts by Linda Williams, Erving Goffman, J.L. Moreno, Elias Canetti, Moshe Feldenkrais, Steve Paxton, Mikhail Bakhtin, Mae West, Jerry Lewis and Fred Moten. Students will contribute their own choices to an exploration of individual performances by Buster Keaton, Louise Lasser, Eleo Pomare, Phyllis Diller, Jackie "Moms" Mabley, and Jerrod Carmichael.

Instructor(s): L. Berlant, C. Sullivan     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): TAPS 36215, ENGL 36407

ARTV 36219. Art and the Active Instrument. 100 Units.

Course description coming soon.

Instructor(s): G. Oppenheimer     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 26219

ARTV 37200. Painting. 100 Units.

Presuming fundamental considerations, this studio course emphasizes the purposeful and sustained development of a student's visual investigation through painting, accentuating both invention and clarity of image. Requirements include group critiques and discussion.

Instructor(s): S. Wolniak     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARTV 10100, 10200, or 10300; and 22000 or 22002
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 27200

ARTV 37204. Painting Matters: En Plein Air. 100 Units.

Some prior painting experience is required. This studio aims to support the development of a student's personal visual investigation through painting, while also challenging habits of thought and making. We will ask questions about form, content, and context with words and with paint. Participation in group critiques, discussion, and one or two field trips will be required.

Instructor(s): J. Stockholder     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): PQ: ARTV 10100, 10200 or 10300 and some prior experience in painting. Basic supplies for the class will be provided, but students may wish to purchase additional supplies. More information will be provided on the first day of class.
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 27204

ARTV 37911. Art and Public Life. 100 Units.

The aim of this seminar-colloquium will be to work through some of the most advanced thinking on ideas about publics and their relation to questions of community, politics, society, culture, and the arts. From John Dewey through Hannah Arendt and Jurgen Habermas, the notion of the public has remained central to a wide variety of debates in the humanities and social sciences. What is a public? How are publics constituted? What is the role of real and virtual space, architectural design, urban planning, and technical media, in the formation of publics? And, most centrally for our purposes, what role can and do the arts play in the emergence of various kinds of publics? The colloquium aspect of the course will involve visiting speakers from a variety of disciplines, both from the University of Chicago faculty, and from elsewhere.

Instructor(s): W.J.T. Mitchell, T. Gates     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 47911, ENGL 32821, CMST 37802, MUSI 35014

ARTV 37920. Virtual Reality Production. 100 Units.

Focusing on experimental moving-image approaches at a crucial moment in the emerging medium of virtual reality, this class will explore and interrogate each stage of production for VR. By hacking their way around the barriers and conventions of current software and hardware to create new optical experiences, students will design, construct and deploy new ways of capturing the world with cameras and develop new strategies and interactive logics for placing images into virtual spaces. Underpinning these explorations will be a careful discussion, dissection and reconstruction of techniques found in the emerging VR "canon" that spans new modes of journalism and documentary, computer games, and narrative "VR cinema." Film production and computer programming experience is welcome but not a prerequisite for the course. Students will be expected to complete short "sketches" of approaches in VR towards a final short VR experience.

Instructor(s): M.Downie     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): Film production and computer programming experience is welcome but not a prerequisite for the course. Students will be expected to complete short "sketches" of approaches in VR towards a final short VR experience.
Equivalent Course(s): MAAD 24920, CMST 37920, CMST 27920, ARTV 27920

ARTV 37921. Augmented Reality Production. 100 Units.

Focusing on experimental moving-image approaches at a crucial moment in the emerging medium of augmented reality, this class will explore and interrogate each stage of production of AR works. Students in this production-based class will examine the techniques and opportunities of this new kind of moving image. During this class we'll study the construction of examples across a gamut from locative media, journalism, and gameplay-based works to museum installations. Students will complete a series of critical essays and sketches towards a final augmented reality project using a custom set of software tools developed in and for the class.

Instructor(s): M. Downie     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): CMST 37911, CMST 27911, MAAD 22911, ARTV 27921

ARTV 37923. Experimental Captures. 100 Units.

This production-based class will explore the possibilities and limits of capturing the world with imaging approaches that go beyond the conventional camera. What new and experimental image-based artworks can be created with technologies such as laser scanning, structured light projection, time of flight cameras, photogrammetry, stereography, motion capture, sensor augmented cameras or light field photography? This hands-on course welcomes students with production experience while being designed to keep established tools and commercial practices off-kilter and constantly in question.

Instructor(s): M. Downie     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ARTV 27923, CMST 37011, CMST 27011, MAAD 21011

ARTV 39700. Independent Study in Visual Arts. 100-300 Units.

Students in this course should have already done fundamental course work and be ready to explore a particular area of interest much more closely.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn Spring Winter

ARTV 39901. 21st Century Art. 100 Units.

This course will consider the practice and theory of visual art in the late twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

Instructor(s): M.J. Jackson     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 42911

ARTV 40000. Graduate Studio Project. 100-300 Units.

Only MFA students in the Department of Visual Arts may register for this class.

Terms Offered: Autumn Spring Winter

ARTV 40100. Mexico: Near and Far, a la distance y for dentro. 100 Units.

This travel seminar is only open to MFA students in the Department of Visual Arts.

Instructor(s): L. Letinsky     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): This travel seminar is only open to MFA students in the Department of Visual Arts.

ARTV 40310. Technology and Aesthetics. 100 Units.

The idea of technological "progress" is a contested one, but it cannot be denied that innovation, at the very least, is a continuous process. Technological innovations regularly enable new mediums, new styles, new genres, and new subject matter as they offer us new ways to record the world, express ourselves, and tell stories. And because art is one of the fundamental lenses through which we see the world, the advent of new artistic and literary forms constantly offers us new ways to know. Each transformation in both creation and reception, however, raises anew fundamental theoretical questions: what is the difference between an objective record of the world and an artistic rendition of it? After touching briefly on the revolution brought about by Gutenberg's invention of the printing press, this class will span the 19th through the 21st centuries to explore how technological innovation has led to new literary and aesthetic forms. Though the primary focus will be on literary texts, the course is intended as an interdisciplinary one, incorporating visual art and media. Class sessions will include visits to the Rare Book Collection, local art museums, and, potentially, Chicago-area theatre performances. For their final projects, students will be able to choose between a research paper or a creative project that engages with the questions and concerns of the course.

Instructor(s): Anastasia Klimchynskaya     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 40311, CHSS 40410, KNOW 40310

ARTV 45540. Fact and Fiction. 100 Units.

Since Grierson's definition of the documentary as "creative treatment of actuality," critics have been struggling to establish distinctions between documentary and fiction. Furthermore, the critical discourse has been constantly challenged by new artistic meditations of reality and its representation, and works blurring the border between the logic of facts and the logic of fiction. Additionally, this dualism is complicated by the difficult question of truth telling. Cinema has a long and winding history of non-fiction: from staged or dramatized actualities at its beginning, via docudrama, fake documentaries and mockumentary, to trends in recent documentaries that incorporate reenactment and animation. Since the mid-1990s the "documentary turn in contemporary art" has seen more and more artists experimenting with documentary modes through which they are questioning the mediations by which facts/documents acquire their facticity. The aim of this seminar will be to examine films and works in contemporary art that address these difficult questions of fact and fiction. Readings will include work from film and art criticism and theory, as well as critical literature addressing questions of fact and fiction in historiography, narratology, and philosophy. Films may include works by Edison, Robert Flaherty, Ari Folman, Abbas Kiraostami, Chris Marker, George Méliès, Avi Mograbi, Rithy Panh, Peter Watkins. Works by contemporary artists may include Kutlug Ataman, The Atlas Group/

Equivalent Course(s): CMST 45540, ARTH 35540, ARTV 20540, ARTH 25540, MAPH 45540, CMST 25540

ARTV 39200. Graduate Seminar: ARTV. 100 Units.

Only MFA students in the Department of Visual Arts may register for this class.

Instructor(s): D. Schutter, W. Pope.L     Terms Offered: Autumn Winter

ARTV 39700. Independent Study in Visual Arts. 100-300 Units.

Students in this course should have already done fundamental course work and be ready to explore a particular area of interest much more closely.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn Spring Winter

ARTV 39901. 21st Century Art. 100 Units.

This course will consider the practice and theory of visual art in the late twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

Instructor(s): M.J. Jackson     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 42911

ARTV 40000. Graduate Studio Project. 100-300 Units.

Only MFA students in the Department of Visual Arts may register for this class.

Terms Offered: Autumn Spring Winter