School of Art, Media, and Technology

Spring 2020 Electives, Topics in 2D: Speculative Worlds – Peter Rostovsky

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Topics in 2D: Speculative Worlds

PUFA 3220, CRN 5239

Art has always dallied with fantasy, horror, hallucination and dream. Reflecting on our world, its politics and pressures though a distorted lens, artists have frequently explored speculative worlds, whether in medieval and Renaissance art, or in Symbolism, Surrealism, psychedelic art, and their contemporary offshoots. This class offers students rigorous painting instruction while inviting them to explore imaginative, surreal spaces and daring ideas. Throughout, we’ll consider a broad range of artists from Richard Dadd, Hilma Af Klint, Mark Thomas Gibson to Emily Mae Smith, while drawing inspiration from short readings in science fiction, magical realism, critical theory, psychoanalysis, as well as from film and other popular forms such as comics and illustration. How do artists, writers and thinkers tackle urgent social issues through imaginative metaphor, the fantastical and the uncanny? What defines the fault-lines separating escapism and urgent critique, high and popular art, legible narrative and semiotic rupture? Through a series of challenging projects, field trips, readings and critiques, students will learn the technical skills and materials of painting while steering their visions into weird territories that defy easy description.

Prerequisite: Core Studio 1: 2D or 1000 level Painting

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