Fall 2010 - Graduate Course Descriptions

Waligore, Marilyn
Discipline and Number
HUAS 6392 Section 501
R Time 7:00 PM - 9:45 PM
Course Title

Description of Course:

Text in contemporary photography and media has numerous precedents, from image/text experiments by Dada artists of the '20s to those generated by postmodern artists of the '80s. Similarly, we see investigations of photography and language among Surrealists of the '30s and Conceptual artists of the '60s and '70s. In this course we will review historical precedents and recent photographic and media practice with text and image, while engaging in our own experimentation. The American landscape is littered with billboards, a phenomenon which parallels our experience surfing the internet. From logos to signage, text can function as a common vernacular, as demonstrated by the photographs of Walker Evans, Lee Friedlander, and Robert Frank. Captions guide our interpretation of photojournalism and commercial ads. The sometimes uneasy union of text and image, as exemplifed by the photo essay, the advertising layout, the news photograph, visual narratives, online shopping and similar experiments in art and photography, creates an interdependence between looking and reading. The process of writing has been reinvigorated through the potential afforded through the merging of photographs and video with text and sound. This course will examine the interrelationships among works that operate on several levels through review of articles, discussion, and practice.

Required Texts:

Drucker, Johanna. The Visible Word: Experimental Typography and Modern Art, 1909-1923

A selection of articles, available electronically, by Roland Barthes, W.J.T. Mitchell, Dick Higgins, Marjorie Perloff, H. Katherine Hayles.

Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:

Evaluation will be based on participation in class workshops, critiques, and discussions; creative work created in response to assignments and in fulfillment of a final portfolio requirement; a research project; a short essay accompanying the final portfolio.

Students should have access to a still or video camera, and be able to output their images to print or digital media. Costs will vary depending upon the scope of student projects.

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