Interventionist Public Art — A Curriculum
The other morning I tweeted about having some ideas on designing curriculum around social interventionist art. A few things got me thinking about this, 1) conversations i have had with similar artists about the somewhat unique set of skills needed to create s.i.a, 2) a friend who just got a job designing new curriculum on educational studies for a uni here in nyc (she’s brilliant, it will be amazing) 3) my own interest in teaching/sharing.*
I have some ideas about what kind of coursework could be offered.
Core (required) curriculum:
- Specific art history covering russian constructivists, dadaism, fluxus, happenings, street & guerilla art, artists like beuys, hamish fulton, richard long. Including contemporary artists. Would also cover history of propaganda, political actions and visual communications (design & marketing). This may need to be two semesters
- Studio practice, which might be the course I currently want to teach. Getting students out into communities to put their learnings into practice, surveying, researching, designing, creating. This maybe would be 2nd year, first year might be more conceptual practices.
- Tools of research. This would cover surveying & questioning methods, including how to structure questions. Learning how to use various tools to research data, understanding how to read and interpret data. And finally, statistical analysis, determining metrics and measuring impact.
- Communications. This is definitely a two semester (or more) course. Includes verbal communications: pitching your project, networking, public speaking, media training, speaking with the public, argumentative training & persuasive skills. There would also be training on how to communicate through the written form (effective email communications, writing press releases, using technology to document & promote your work) and visually (communicating ideas through drawing and computer generated imagery)
- Effective proposal writing, including researching grants, writing different types of applications, grant reporting and metrics.
- Fundraising – how to write contracts and mou’s, researching and approaching corporate sponsors, fiscal sponsorship, writing appeal letters, managing donations, online fundraising, hosting fundraising events, and getting in-kind donations.
Some of the elective courses could be:
- Contemporary social issues: environment, food politics, social justice, women’s issues, international issues
- Urban planning & design: overview of basics, with emphasis on infrastructure, public spaces, transportation (this could be 2 semesters too)
- History of public art: survey of more traditional methods and models, also would include murals
- Computer 3d modeling: i don’t think this needs explanation right?
- History of social movements
- Survey courses on specific topics: history of nyc (or city in which the course is taught), histories of specific social movements (offering more in depth information than course above)
This was the rough draft (written on my phone). Anyone want to support a larger development of the curriculum? Anyone have any thoughts or am I missing something?
*My interest in teaching/sharing is this: I truly believe in sharing knowledge as a means to elevate anyone and everyone. However I don’t have any desire for teaching to be my life. I’m thinking one course is enough.
and yes, this is something that i do in my “free time” – i think about things and i write them down. that’s why i want to start my own well funded think tank