Visual Arts DepartmentWestern Arts and Humanities

Graduate Courses

Graduate Courses for 2015-2016

 

9500A MA/MFA Seminar – Research Methods
Prof. Patrick Mahon
Wednesdays, 2:30 pm – 5:30 pm; Room 148

The Master’s seminar in research methods is the foundational course for the MFA in studio and the MA in art history. The course is an integrated context for reading, analysis of art works, and engagement with relevant practices by studio and art history students, in a shared context. It combines a theoretical component involving a survey of some key movements in contemporary critical theory with a methods component focusing respectively on the development of tools for art making, related writing, and the use of professional skills by artists; and on art historical research methods and the development of critical writing skills, and the use of professional tools by art historians.

9600A PhD Seminar – Research Methods & Professional Practices
Prof. Patrick Mahon
Fridays, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 pm; Room 249

The PhD seminar in Research Methods and Professional Practice is the foundation course for the PhD program in Art and Visual Culture. The theoretical component of the course is focused on studying a selection of theoretical texts from the PhD minor comprehensive lists and/or from pertinent Major Comprehensive lists in order to develop proficiency. This serves as preliminary preparation for the minor comprehensive and/or major comprehensive exams. The methods component of the course is concerned with research methods and professional practice development. The emphasis here is on grant writing, pedagogy, scholarly writing, research and methodology.

9521B/9621B Graduate Studio Elective: LIVE (Improvise)
Prof. Christof Migone
Wednesdays, 7:00 – 10:00 pm; Room 249

I insist on this idea that as long as the work is in the workshop, the work is in danger. At each moment, each one of the artist's actions, or rather from each of the artist's actions, it may live or die. The agile choreography of an improviser, noticing and resolving in the same instant the problems raised by this hurried advance of the work; the anxiety of a fresco painter knowing that no mistake will be reparable; the works of the composer or the writer at their table, with the time to meditate at leisure, to retouch, to redo... it is nevertheless true that all must ceaselessly answer, in a slow or rapid progression, the questions of the sphinx—guess, or you will be devoured.  - Étienne Souriau

To improvise is to act and produce while remaining open to contingencies. Can one develop techniques of improvisation? If so, how? Can improvisation be planned or learned? Can a plan be improvised? Can we learn from discussions on improvisation animating other artistic disciplines? For this studio elective we will investigate improvisation in its relation to a constellation of related terms and trigger works (visual, sonic, performative, textual). These would include: chance, spontaneity, liveness, presentness, procrastination, dérive methods, failure aesthetics, re-de-skilling, Catherine Clément's syncope, Sonia Boyce's Exquisite Cacophony, Rahsaan Roland Kirk's polyphonics, Nina Simone, the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Mattin's radical critique of free improv, John Cage's indeterminacy, Michael Fernandes, bricolage, the "intelligent improvisation" of worms (Jane Bennett), Fred Moten's riffing on "words don't go there", comedian Tig Notaro's poignant ontological wordplay between live (recording in front of an audience) and to live.

These key areas of blurred doing and thinking and their implications on "work" (both noun and verb) will be explored through studio production as well as readings, discussions, and presentations. Students will heuristically be lead to diligently and rigorously meander through this inexhaustible constellation and improvise their own trajectory.

9540A/9543A Studio Seminar
Prof. Sky Glabush
Fridays 10:00 to 1:00 pm – Room VAC 247

This course is designed to provide an opportunity for MFA students to participate in an exchange dedicated to the research and development of their studio practice. Students will be asked to participate by contributing to informal studio reviews that will be scheduled throughout the term. These group meetings may review work-in-progress; access ongoing technical concerns; assist with immediate needs of a projects concept and execution; develop an appropriate language for evaluation and critique; and involve discussion on related issues. Each student will be required to submit a detailed dossier that will provide information about studio visits with faculty as well as meetings with visiting speakers. Students will be required to present their work for critique to a committee at the end of the year.

9541B/9544B Studio Seminar
Prof. Kelly Wood
Fridays 10:00 am to 1:00 pm – Room VAC 135

This course is designed to provide an opportunity for MFA students to participate in an exchange dedicated to the research and development of their studio practice. Students will be asked to participate by contributing to informal studio reviews that will be scheduled throughout the term. These group meetings may review work-in-progress; access ongoing technical concerns; assist with immediate needs of a projects concept and execution; develop an appropriate language for evaluation and critique; and involve discussion on related issues. Each student will be required to submit a detailed dossier that will provide information about studio visits with faculty as well as meetings with visiting speakers. Students will be required to present their work for critique to a committee at the end of the year.

9551A/9651A Graduate Seminar: Cathedrals, Castles, Cloisters, and UNESCO World Heritage:  The Fabled Cultural Landscape of the Middle Rhine
Prof. Kathy Brush
Tuesdays 2:30 – 5:30 pm; Room VAC 247

This interdisciplinary seminar explores the historical, cultural, and artistic heritage of the legendary Rhine River, Europe’s most important inland waterway and transportation corridor.  The seminar will focus on the Middle Rhine, a region extending from Bingen to Cologne, which is celebrated globally for its dramatic scenery and exceptionally rich cluster of medieval cathedrals, monasteries, and castles.  Students will analyze the art, architecture, and history of the region’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites (e.g., the imperial cathedrals at Speyer and Cologne, the monastic complexes at Eberbach and Maria Laach) and will also consider diverse ways in which this cultural landscape, often featuring steep cliffs, vineyards, and fairytale-like villages, has acquired mythic status in the modern imagination.  Depending on research interests, some seminar participants may choose to investigate how our present-day vision of the medieval artistic culture of the “romantic” Middle Rhine has been shaped by post-medieval literature and folklore (e.g., the writings of Goethe, Heine, and Victor Hugo), music (e.g., the music-dramas of Richard Wagner), artistic representations (e.g., paintings and watercolours by J. M. W. Turner), political events (e.g., cross-border invasions, wars), and/or tourism.  The churches and fortresses perched on hilltops along the meandering river have attracted international travelers from the eighteenth-century Grand Tour to Let’s Go Europe 2015.

The seminar thus aims to engage critically with the medieval art and history of the Middle Rhine and with the modern reception and representation of this region’s medieval cultural heritage, with special emphasis on English-language art historical scholarship and travel literature.

9578B/9678B  Graduate Seminar: Paracinema
Prof. Christine Sprengler
Tuesdays 2:30 to 5:30 pm – Room VAC 148

“Paracinema” refers to works that attempt to generate the effects of cinema without using the traditional materials or physical support of film. Art historically, the term has been used to describe sculpture, installation, and video works from the 1960s and 1970s (including, for example, Anthony McCall’s “Line Describing A Cone” [1973]) that encourage analysis of “cinema” as an idea or concept by recreating its aesthetic, spectatorial and technological dimensions through a variety of creative strategies. This course will begin with a brief survey of paracinema’s early twentieth-century precedents, followed by a more in-depth exploration of its post-1960s manifestations. It will also consider the extent to which the term facilitates productive engagements with a variety of practices since the “cinematic turn” in contemporary art.

 

9582A/9682A Graduate Seminar- Contemporary Art and the Archive
Prof. Joy James
Thursdays, 11:30 am – 2:30 pm; Room 247

Various fields of research have understood the model of the archive as conceptually significant in shaping history and memory, as well as individual and social identities. In the context of a series of cross-disciplinary readings this seminar course looks at what has been recently referred to as the “archival turn”, and explores what this turn has to do with stagings of the archive in modern and contemporary art. We will begin with an overview of the significance of photography in histories of the archive, and move on to focus on archival interventions in contemporary practices across new media and installation art. The continued importance of photography’s aesthetic legacies to ways of sensing the world will be a topic of investigation throughout the course.

 

9585B/9685B Graduate Seminar:  Radical Museum
Prof. Kirsty Robertson
Wednesdays, 9:30 am - 12:30 pm; Room VAC 247

Since the first days of the institutionalization of collections, museums have been targets for radical thought and action from all sides of the political spectrum. In turn, museums have presented themselves both as bastions of conservative thought and also as safe spaces for the imagination and activation of radically different worldviews. Looking at museums, collections, art galleries, and archives, this class begins with the central texts of critical museum studies, and then proceeds to push those texts in new directions, working toward unraveling accepted knowledge about the museum altogether. What does it mean to allow radical thought into the museum versus radically rethinking the museum as a space? Can we update André Breton’s notion of a museum without walls for a twenty-first context? Is there even a place for museums in the current day? Some of the topics covered will include: the collection and archiving of contentious objects and ideas; thoughts on how to collect objects that no longer exist or that have been actively erased and suppressed; rethinking institutional critique in the current environment; rethinking museums from Indigenous and other perspectives; contemporary artistic and curatorial projects that unsettle museum space and meaning; curating difficult material; and future directions for critical museum studies.

 

9586B/9686B Graduate Seminar: Writing for the Art World
Prof. Sarah Bassnett
Thursdays, 11:30 am – 2:30 pm; Room VAC 247

Writing for the Art World is a practical course that focuses on forms of writing common in the art world. Using current exhibitions and art world events as case studies, we work with written materials such as press releases, interpretive panels, catalogue essays, and exhibition reviews. We also consider how different art publications and various forms of writing address their audiences and how Internet-based art organizations such as Akimbo and e-flux have changed the way art fairs, contemporary art exhibitions, and other events are promoted. The seminar format allows for group activities and discussion, as well as peer review of writing. Learning outcomes include: communicating ideas in writing at a professional level in a variety of forms; demonstrating an awareness of the way different forms of writing address their audiences; and conducting research on current issues in the field.

 

2014-2015

9500A MA/MFA Seminar – Research Methods
Prof. Patrick Mahon
Wednesdays, 2:30 pm – 5:30 pm; Room 148

9540A/9543A Studio Seminar
Prof. Kim Moodie
Fridays 10:00 to 1:00 pm – Room VAC 247

9541B/9544B Studio Seminar
Prof. Sky Glabush
Fridays 10:00 am to 1:00 pm – Room VAC 135

9551A/9651A Graduate Seminar: The Monument in Early Modern and Modern Art
Prof. Cody Barteet
Tuesdays 2:30 to 5:30 pm – Room VAC 148

9551B/9651B Graduate Seminar: Medieval Art in North American Contexts: Collecting, Display, Representation, 1914-2014
Prof. Kathy Brush
Tuesdays 2:30 – 5:30 pm; Room VAC 247

9578A/9678A Graduate Seminar: Writing Without Words: The Critical and Curatorial Challenges of Arte Povera and Its Allies
Prof. John Hatch
Mondays, 8:30 am - 11:30 am; Room VAC 249

9582B/9682B Graduate Seminar- That Thinking Feeling: Engaging the Affective Capacities of Art
Prof. Joy James
Thursdays 11:30 am – 2:30 pm; Room 247

9586B/9686B Graduate Seminar: Writing for the Art World
Prof. Sarah Bassnett
Wednesdays 8:30 am – 11:30 am; Room VAC 247

2013-2014

9500B/9600B MA/PhD Seminar – Theory and Methods
Instructor: Marielle Aylen
Tuesdays 2:30-5:30 pm – Room VAC 148

9521B Studio Elective – Research Methods
Prof. Kelly Jazvac
Thursdays 2:30 to 5:30 pm – Room VAC 148

9540A/9543A Studio Seminar
Prof. David Merritt
Fridays 10:00 to 1:00 pm – Room VAC 148

9541B/9544B Studio Seminar
Prof. Kelly Wood
Fridays 10:00 am to 1:00 pm – Room VAC 135

9551B/9651B Women in Renaissance and Baroque Art
Prof. Cody Barteet
Mondays 2:30 to 5:30 pm – Room VAC 247

9554A/9654A Graduate Seminar: The Work of Photography
Prof. Sarah Bassnett
Tuesdays 11:30 am to 2:30 pm – Room VAC 247

VISARTS 9555B Seminar in 20th Century Art
Prof. Bridget Elliott
Wednesdays 11:30 – 2:30 pm – Room VAC 249

9569 McIntosh Curatorial Internship

9578A/9678A Paracinema
Prof. Christine Sprengler
Wednesdays 8:30 to 11:30 am – Room VAC 247

9580 / 9680 McIntosh Artist in the Community

2012-2013

9500A Art Theory and Criticism
Prof. Joy James

9600A PhD Seminar: Theory and Methods
Prof. Sarah Bassnett

VAS 9521B/9621B – Recycler: Revision and Re-use in the Visual Arts
Prof. Kelly Wood

9540A/9543A – Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. Patrick Mahon

9541B/9544B – Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. Kelly Jazvac

9551A/9651A – Medieval/Modern: The Middle ages in Early Twentieth-Century Visual Culture
Prof. Kathryn Brush

 9554B/9654B – Documentary, Mockumentary, Forgery and Hoax
Prof. Bridget Elliott

 9555A/9655A – Echoes of the Baroque in the Last Century
Prof. John Hatch

9566B/9666B – The Archive in Contemporary Culture
Prof. Anthony Purdy

2011-2012

9500: Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Prof. Patrick Mahon

9600: PhD Seminar: Art Theory and Criticism
Prof. Sarah Bassnett

9540A/9543A - Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. Kim Moodie

9541B/9544B Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. David Merritt

9551/9651 Visualizing Race and Class in the New World
Prof. Cody Barteet

9554/9654 Museums, Marginality and the Mainstream
Prof. Kirsty Robertson

9555/9655 That Thinking Feeling: Engaging the Affective Capacities of Art
Prof. Joy James

9581/9681 The Turn to the Object
Prof. Anthony Purdy

2010-2011

VAH/S 9500B: Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Prof. Kirsty Robertson

9600B: PhD Seminar: Art Theory and Criticism
Prof. Bridget Elliott

9540A/9543A - Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. David Merritt

9541B/9544B/9641B - Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. Kelly Wood

9521A/9621A - Studio Elective - Work Ethic: Looking Like You’re Not Trying and Looking Like You Mean It
Prof. Kelly Jazvac

9551G/9651G - Graduate Seminar - Monuments
Prof. Cody Barteet

9555G/9655G - Art in Time and Space as Seen through a Telescope: Artistic Journeys through Modern Science
Prof. John Hatch

VAH 9578F/9678F - Modern - The Animal in Modernism
Prof. Marielle Aylen

9579F/9679F - Phenomenology and Art
Prof. Helen Fielding

9554F/9654F Seminar - Paper Politics: Printed Matter, Political Engagement and Avant-garde Practices
Prof. Patrick Mahon

9566G/9666G - Cultures of Memory
Prof. Anthony Purdy

2009-2010

VAH/S 9500A/9600A: Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Prof. Christine Sprengler

VAS 9521B/9621B Studio Elective Course: Why make pictures?
Prof. Sky Glabush

VAS 9540A/9543A/96640A Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. Patrick Mahon

VAS 9541B/9544B Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. David Merritt

VAH 9551G/9651G Medieval Art- Mapping Medievalism at the Canadian Frontier
Prof. Kathy Brush

VAH 9554/9654F Modern Art – A Stitch in Time Saves . . . Textiles, Technology and Contemporary Art
Prof. Kirsty Robertson

VAH 9555G/9655G Modern Art – Photography’s Discursive Spaces
Prof. Sarah Bassnett

VAH 9566F/9666F The Archive in Contemporary Culture
Prof. Anthony Purdy

VAH 9578F/9678F Modern – The maison d’artiste, 1880-2009
Prof. Bridget Elliott

VAH 9579G//9679G The Forensic Imagination: Evidence, Testimony, and the Material Witness
Prof. Susan Schuppli

2008-2009

VAH/S 9500A / 9600A Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Prof. Christine Sprengler

VAS 9521B / 9621B Studio Elective Course: Extemporal
Professor David Merritt

VAS 9540A / 9543A / 96640A Graduate Studio Seminar
Professor Susan Schuppli

VAS 9541B / 9544B Graduate Studio Seminar
Professor Patrick Mahon

VAH 9551G / 9651G Medieval Art and Its Modern Interpreters
Professor Kathryn Brush

VAH 9554 / 9654G Modern Art – Economizing Culture: Globalization, Art and the Creative Industries
Professor Kirsty Robertson

VAH 9556G / 9656G The Palace in Latin America
Prof. Cody Barteet

VAH 9578F / 9678F: Modern Art - Rediscovering Nature andthe Body in a Post Industrial World: The Adventures of Arte Povera
Prof. John Hatch

VAH 9579F / 9679F
Modern Art - Photography and Social Crisis 
Professor Sarah Bassnett

VAH 9551F / VAH 9651F Transformations: the impact of the Women’s Movement on art and art history
Professor Madeline Lennon

VAH 9594F / 9694F Survey of Chinese Visual Art
Professor James Flath

2007-2008

VAH/S 500A/600A Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Prof. Bridget Elliott

VAS 521A/621A Sonic Fictions
Prof. Susan Schuppli

526B/626B Studio Special Topic: Adaptation Nation: Modernism, Canadian Design and the Artist Multiple
Prof. P. Mahon

540A/543A/640A Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. Sky Glabush

541B/544B/641B Graduate Studio Seminar
Prof. Kelly Wood

VAH 561F/661F Baroque Constructions: representation in the 17th century
Prof. Madeline Lennon

567B/667B Special Projects in Studio
Course title: “Advanced Seminar In Painting and Drawing”
Prof. Sky Glabush

VAH 584B/684B - After Images: Photography and Literature
Prof: Janelle Blankenship

VAH587A/687A Collecting Cultures
Prof. Tony Purdy

VAH 594B/694B Special Topic: Embodied Information: Researching the Sensuous and the Immaterial
Prof. Joy Parr

2006-2007

VAH/S 500A Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Professor John Hatch

VAS 521B Studio Elective – Cultivators of Culture
Professor Colette Urban

VAS 540a/543a Graduate Studio Seminar
Professor David Merritt

VAS 541b/544b Graduate Studio Seminar
Professor Kelly Wood

VAH 551G - Seminar in Medieval Art
Topic: Medieval Art in North American Contexts
Professor Kathryn Brush

VAH 566B – Nineteenth Century Art History Seminar
Professor Lorenzo Buj

VAH 577G – Modern – Icon/Fetish
Professor Kajri Jain

VAH 578F - Modern - Paracinema
Professor Christine Sprengler

2005-2006

VAH/S 500A Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Professor Sarah Bassnett

521B New Studio Elective - Vampire Picnic: A Reference Manual
Professor Kelly Wood

VAS 540a/543a Graduate Studio Seminar
Professor Patrick Mahon

VAS 541b/544b Graduate Studio Seminar
Professor Colette Urban

VAH 551G/ VAH 451G (Seminar in Medieval Art)
Topic: Patronage, Audience, and Engagement in Medieval Art
Professor Kathryn Brush

VAH 554b Modern - Ars Memoria
Professor Lorenzo Buj

VAH561F Baroque Art: Baroque Constructions
Professor Madeline Lennon

VAH 587G La Maison d'Artiste
Professor Bridget Elliott

2004-2005

500a Art Theory and Criticism in Western Culture
Professor John G. Hatch

526b Graduate Special Topics Course: Creative Critters Commune
Professor Colette Urban

540a/543a MFA Graduate Studio Seminar 2004
Professor Ben Reeves

541b/544b Graduate Studio Seminar
Professor Daniela Sneppova

551G Reading Medieval Art
Professor Kathryn Brush

577F A is for Art, H is for Heterotopia
Professor Bridget J. Elliott