Special Topics for Summer 2016 and Fall 2016

Special Topics 

Please note: this page will be updated as information is confirmed. In case of a discrepancy between this page and InsideEC, the information on InsideEC will be deemed correct.

  • Additional information on these courses is available at https://inside.ecuad.ca
  • Most credit courses have prerequisites that are clearly outlined on the website.

Spring 2017

AHIS 336 S001 – History + Contemporary Movement (3)

Tuesdays, 12:30pm – 3:20pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Ariane Noel de Tilly

Topic: Past/Present: Two Eras of Portraiture 

Portraiture is not a genre that was invented during the Renaissance, but it is a genre that became increasingly popular during that period. This special topic course will focus on the history of the portrait by examining the evolution of portraiture during two historical periods: the Renaissance and our Contemporary era. Throughout the semester, we will study the functions, uses and display of Renaissance portraits and self-portraits and will then look at examples of contemporary artists who work with this genre in order to identify the similarities and differences between the two eras.

AHIS 410 S001 –Topics in Global Art (3)

Thursdays, 3:50pm – 6:40pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Cissie Fu

Topic: Call-Convene-Collect

What does it mean to be a curator to call, to wait, to wait upon, to exercise and be subjected to hospitality, to recognize and be recognized?

In collaboration with Gallery 221A, Vancouver Art Gallery, and BC’s Creative Economy Strategy, Emily Carr will welcome international curators from renowned cultural institutions in Asia, Europe, and the Americas for a special iteration of AHIS 410 this Spring. 

This pass-fail lecture course can host up to 150 students to witness and engage in a sustained and varied semester-long on- and off-stage conversation about critical curatorship as cultural practice in the context of globalization. Each weekly session will include a lecture by a visiting curator (a call, if we will), a critical dialogue between the caller and an Emily Carr faculty member (for a response), and open interaction with students and community members in attendance (to achieve resonance).  These face-to-face proceedings will be supplemented by a public course blog, contributions to which will be required by enrolled students.

Exploring issues related to the complexities of curating as a manner of contemporary, cosmopolitan knowledge production, this course will examine the etiquette of intercultural mutualities and the anxieties of globalized courtship to render intelligible and generative curatorship as excitable anticipation.  Provisional themes include:

  • auteurship
  • collection as action
  • commodification
  • decolonisation
  • epistemic disobedience
  • museums on fire
  • hyper (art) objects
  • pluriversality
  • slow curating
  • spatial figurations

Students interested in or puzzled by curatorial practices from all majors are welcome to register.  Students who do not meet the course pre-requisites but wish to take this course for credit should contact the convenor (Cissie Fu) for exemption criteria.

CCID 201 S001B + CCID 301 S001B – Social Practice + Community Engagement (3)

Wednesdays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Justin Langlois

Topic: LandMarks 2017

This course will run as an innovative partnership, linking students to a nationally synchronized set of courses and exhibitions exploring critical themes related to present-day environmental and climatic crises, the legacies of colonialism, and the complex relationship between nationhood and cultural identity.

Landmarks are meeting places. They can be features of the landscape—a tree, a mountain, a waterway, a boulder—or part of the built environment. The land is marked by time, by the elements, by the habits of animals and peoples. Landmarks define boundaries and echo multiple histories, stories and beliefs. They give shape to our collective memories. A landmark is a turning point and a legacy for future generations. Landmarks help us find our way. To mark is to act.

LandMarks: Art + Places + Perspectives is a network of collaborative, contemporary art projects across Parks Canada places during the 150th year of Canadian Confederation. 2017 marks an occasion to reflect on a much older land, and to address our relationship with nature in the face of present-day environmental and climatic crises, the legacies of colonialism, and the complex relationship between nationhood and cultural identity. Using art as a catalyst for discourse and social change, LandMarks looks forward, and provides an opportunity to imagine, to speculate, and to invent our futures through the eyes of artists, art students, communities, and through the spirit of the land.

This course will introduce students to a wide range of contemporary practitioners, critical perspectives, and opportunities for creating new artwork in public spaces. Students will have unprecedented access and resources to curators, professional artists, and opportunities for sharing their work with wider publics. Beyond the 2017 Spring semester, CCID 201/301: LandMarks will also continue with a follow-up offering in the Summer 2017 to allow students the opportunity to participate in an exhibition as part of the larger LandMarks initiative.  Students taking the course in Spring 2017 are highly encouraged but not required to commit to the second leg in Term 1 of Summer 2017, and new students can join the iteration in Summer 2017 without having taken the first leg in Spring 2017 but will be required to catch up with interim conclusions before starting the Summer course.

CCID 201 S002C and CCID 301 S002C – Social Practice + Community Engagement (3)

Fridays, 1pm – 3:50pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Hannah Jickling and Helen Reed

Topic: Big Rock Candy Mountain: Tastemakers
Is there a way to work within the tentative areas of youthful self-definition to access new aesthetic terrain? What happens when we re-frame children as tastemakers rather than consumers? Is there is a place where adult rationalities might productively stretch, crack, dissolve, like taffy, like Warheads©, like Toxic Waste©??

- Quote from Big Rock Candy Mountain: The Start of Something Bigger and Something Smaller by Vanessa Kwan

This course provides students with the opportunity to learn about expanded public practice through an embedded engagement with Big Rock Candy Mountain, an ongoing public artwork produced by Other Sights For Artists? Projects. Big Rock Candy Mountain is a flavor incubator and taste-making think-tank between artists Hannah Jickling and Helen Reed and students, teachers and support staff at Queen Alexandra Elementary School in East Vancouver. The project involves candy editions, flavor-making workshops and artist talks for children. Students in this course will spend part of the semester off-campus at Queen Alex, supporting visiting artist talks and projects at the elementary school. Borrowing from educational models and participatory methodologies, in both current and historical art practices, this is a course for any student looking to explore atypical contexts and embedded approaches to art-making.

Students must be able to meet off-site, at Queen Alexandra Elementary School. Police record checks must be completed at the outset of the course. As course work is coordinated with several community partners, reliability and professionalism are of the utmost importance. Absence from more than two classes will result in an automatic failure of the course.

CCID 202 S001D + CCID 302 S001D – Fieldwork: Topics (3)

Thursdays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Cameron Cartiere

Topic: Public Art & Social Practice on Main Street: From Here to There 

This CCID practice-based course offers students an opportunity to engage in coursework focused on embedded practice that includes an off-site fieldwork experience. The semester will focus on testing the working draft Mount Pleasant Community Art Plan using temporary public art events and social practice interventions in the MPBIA district. The class would spend the semester examining the Mount Pleasant BIA district of Main St.

Students will create their own practice-based project proposals based on site research, cultural context, and independent studio work. This is an opportunity to develop practical experience working in the public realm and to explore new approaches for understanding audience, engagement, and negotiation.

Through class lectures and fieldtrips, students will be engaged with various stakeholders including the Mount Pleasant business owners, local artists and designers, city officials, community members, and public art experts.

This course is open to students in any degree program and any major.

CCID 300 S040Y – Community Projects & HUMN 311 S040Y – Visual Art Seminar (3)

Thursdays, 1pm – 3:50pm, Spring 2017 at North Island College

Hybrid course – face-to-face with an online component

Instructor: Prav Pillay & Sarah Van Borek

Topic: Shared Histories, Imagined Futures & The Culture of Possibility: A Canada-South Africa Co-production

In this unique and dynamic program in partnership with RAVEN (Respecting Aboriginal Values and Environmental Needs)[1], students will collaborate with 4th year visual art students based at the University of Johannesburg to produce an exhibition that will take place simultaneously in South Africa and Canada and have a virtual component and interaction between the exhibition spaces and student artists. Work produced will explore connections between peoples, place, land, environment and resources. This project is an exploration of how, by sharing dialogue, storytelling and creative collaboration in an educational context, we can build a new culture of possibility in the “space” that is not defined by geographical borders, language or cultural differences, or limitations of the past.

This course is primarily face-to-face with an online component. Student groups in both Canada and South Africa will follow a parallel process that includes dialogue and creative exchange with each other (both online and through real-time video conferencing), field trips to intercultural green spaces, interviews with community members, and explorations in concepts of Site/Non-Site, Radical Cartography and Acoustic Ecology. The result will be collaborative works that may involve a range of mediums and take various forms. The course will culminate in an exhibit launch and public engagement event at the Courtenay & District Museum. There may be an opportunity for students who successfully complete this program to be hired as professional artists in a second phase of this project to take place later in 2017. Students from all disciplines are encouraged to apply.

Please note: this is a hybrid CCID 300 & HUMN 311 course. Students registered in CCID 300 will be expected to demonstrate a greater scope of artistic production. Students registered in HUMN 311 will be expected to demonstrate a greater scope of arts-based research and produce a process essay to support the artwork produced.


[1] RAVEN is a non-profit charitable organization that provides financial resources to assist Aboriginal Nations within Canada in lawfully forcing industrial development to be reconciled with their traditional ways of life, and in a manner that addresses global warming or other ecological sustainability challenges. http://raventrust.com/

CRAM 303 S001N - Ceramics Practices (6) cross-listed with PHOT 306 S001N -Special Topics in Photography (6)

Thursdays, 12:30pm – 6:40pm, Spring 2017

Instructors: Paul Mathieu + Sandra Semchuk

Topic: Tracing Culture As We Make It

This course will encourage collaboration between ceramics and photography students. Students will develop collaborative or individual projects that bring the two media together to generate new visual conversations, to challenge the viewer to consider the future and how each medium has been used to trace the history of cultures. It is the nature of both media to archive.  Students will have the opportunity to assert their individual inquiries in dialogue with one another across disciplines. Students will consider the social and cultural significance of their own practice. Options for cross-pollination include the use of photography and ceramic installations and in the use of photographic decals as transfers to ceramics.  Students will have access to printing archival photographs and to use ready-made ceramics such as porcelain cylinders and industrial dinnerware as well as larger tiles. The focus will be on ideas rather than on technique.

Both instructors will meet with students in the first segment of the class and then in the last three hours students will have open studio and the opportunity to work together or alone.  

CRAM 303 S002Q – Ceramics Practices: Topics & INDD 330 S002Q – Ceramics: Advanced (6)

Tuesdays, 8:30am-3:20pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Julie York

Topic: The Object Factory: Model and Mold Making 

This six-credit course will build skills in plaster mold and model making. Students will engage in activities around the design of objects for mold making.  Students will develop an individual aesthetic and conceptual framework for their practice within the area of ceramic production, looking at ways in which molds have been used in both the historical and contemporary art and design world. This is a class for students that are interested in starting their own business, or in using the “multiple object” in their sculptural practice.

Students will learn how to design forms and complex molds through slip casting and other related techniques, and will be provided with opportunities to investigate digital equipment such as 3-D printing, the CNC router, and digital decal printers.  The end goal is to have students develop their concepts into a body of work which may include creating a ceramic line for production.  Finding a thoughtful, personal direction with these techniques are paramount to this class, and both sculptural and functional practices are welcome.

ENGL 201 S001 – Writing Across the Arts (3)

Mondays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Tara Wren

Topic: Designerly Ways of Writing

We will explore different designerly methods of writing, using design studio practices to make written work. Visual techniques like mind-mapping can connect designers more deeply to their writing, making writing a natural part of the design process. We’ll draw examples and insights from interdisciplinary sources, and develop personalized writing practices that focus on making user-centred texts. Discussion and assignments will focus on forms of writing specific to the design program. While this course focuses on writing for design, developing a designerly way of writing is a practice useful for students from all critical and studio disciplines.

FNDT 134 S030 – Directed Projects (3)

Hybrid course - online plus one week in-class

Tuesday, February 14 to Saturday, February 18, 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Cissie Fu + Lisa Novak

Topic: The Winter School of Disobedience

Since the 1960s, artists and designers have explored different modes of creative actions and artistically-oriented tactics to react to and resist cultural, economic, political or social circumstances of their time.

Now often referred to as socially-engaged art or social practice, these ever emergent modes of cultural production and collaboration seek to challenge the role of the artist and designer as author and producer, and have catapulted definitions such as participation or community engagement into the narratives of artistic practices. What does it mean to be an activist and organiser as an artist or designer in the 21st century?

Through discussions, readings, performative actions and spatial interventions, this transdisciplinary, question-based, five-day hybrid academic-studio intensive will situate artistic activism and creative dissent as tools for the creation of a new cultural commons. Together we will critically investigate past and present examples of creative disobedience and social practice, as well as examine the role of the artist and designer as activist, organiser, and political being. Experiments, quests, and demonstrations will encompass individual and group activities ranging from writing as a politico-aesthetic practice (manifestos!) to mobilization tactics (agitprop!) social choreography (drifting à la derive!) to urban interventions (spectactorship now!). 

Supplemented with occasional assignments and readings throughout the entire semester, this 3-credit elective will run during Study Week from Tuesday 14 February through Saturday February 18, 2017 and will culminate in the staging of a final project on April 1, 2016.  Students enrolling in this course must be available for the entirety of the five-day intensive and be committed to working steadily afterwards, with check-in points with fellow coursemates and instructors, towards the final project date.

Students from all years and practices are welcome, and priority will be given to Foundation students.  Students in Years 2, 3, and 4 who are interested but concerned about the implications of the FNDT mnemonic in the context of their graduation requirements should contact Academic Advising, towards submitting a course substitution form where necessary.

FVIM 333 S001E Media Practices (6)  cross-listed with ISMA 303 S001E Interactive Sound + Vision (6)

Wednesdays, 8:30am – 3:50pm, Spring 2017

Instructors: Julie Andreyev + Simon Overstall

Topic: Acoustic Ecologies

This special topics focuses on acoustic ecology practices combined with sound-art making. Acoustic ecology pays attention to the sonic fields of urban and natural environments, and to the humans and other-than-human beings that inhabit them. It emphasizes relations, the relationship between beings and their surroundings, and the relationship between soundscapes and listeners. The course asks students to consider how sound is relational; how it can a medium of relation with world around them. Students will combine this investigation with creative making. This course goes deep, researching acoustical spaces of the local environments and their creative potential for art making. Students will research, record, report and imagine how to respond to a site through sound. Students will self-determine, research and produce one sound-based project throughout the course as a sound walk, outdoor sound installation, gallery-type soundscape, performance, sound map, or other sound art form. The course will support students who may wish to integrate visual media or materials into their project. The course will include lectures, workshops, readings, discussions, critiques. Students will gain skills in field recording, sound editing, synthesizing sound, computational techniques, soundscape composition, and soundscape production. This course is open all students in the University who have completed second year.

FVIM 416 S001 - Special Topics in Integrated Media (3)

Thursdays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Julie Andreyev

Topic: Media Ecologies

This special topics course offers students the opportunity to expand their practice by involving creative content from other-than-human beings. This course is for artists and designers who want to explore interspecies collaboration—contemporary thought and practice that explore more-than-human creativity, and human and other-than-human co-creation. Students will be encouraged to explore how creative processes contribute to ecological awareness and respectful co-existence. Students will be exposed to methods that combine their experimental making with ethics of care. The course includes workshops, lectures, readings, discussions and making sessions. Students will be asked to create one project in the medium of their choice—film, video, sound, text, installation, web, performance, projection, photography, etc.—produced in respectful creative collaboration with other animals, plants, or inanimate beings. Students may use this course to inform their graduating degree project. This course is open all students in the University who have completed second year.

HUMN 305 S002 – Studies in the Humanities (3)

Tuesdays, 3:50pm – 6:40pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Rita Wong

Topic: What is Decolonial Love?

In the epigraph to Leanne Simpson’s book of stories and songs, entitled Islands of Decolonial Love, she quotes Junot Diaz, who states “the kind of love that i was interested in, that my characters long for intuitively, is the only kind of love that could liberate them from that horrible legacy of colonial violence. i am speaking about decolonial love…”  Proposing that love, peace and justice are closely related, we will start with reading and listening to Indigenous cultural workers and acknowledging the Coast Salish peoples whose traditional territories we are on. We will also ask: what is Indigenous resurgence? What is solidarity? On this journey, we will read and discuss the work of Indigenous authors who are key to contemporary cultural renewal, voices like Lee Maracle, Leanne Simpson, Arthur Manuel, Richard Van Camp, the Zapatistas, and more.

HUMN 306 S030 – Studies in Humanities: Design (3)

Hybrid course - online plus one week in-class

Tuesday, February 14 to Saturday, February 18, 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Craig Badke + Gillian Russell

Topic: Design Intensive

"People invent new machines and improve existing ones almost unconsciously, rather as a somnambulist will go walking in his sleep."

~ George Orwell, Road to Wigan Pier (1937), p. 191

The introduction and adoption of new technologies often occurs without due consideration of the ways in which they alter our relationships to one another and to our environment. Technologies, widely conceived (from sidewalk curbs to iPads), are an active part of our cultural fabric. Most misunderstandings about technology stem from a belief that we are somehow separate from the things we make and use on a daily basis, that they are simply useful conveniences that have little influence on us and leave us unchanged in the process of using them.

Neil Postman describes the kind of change technologies have in our society as ‘ecological’ in nature, likening it to a drop of food colouring in water. The change is not simply additive, i.e. ‘water’ + ‘food colouring’ - everything is coloured by the change. Only in the narrowest conceptions of context and scope can technologies be thought of as acting without consequence or that their introduction leaves us or our society unaltered.

We often limit our questioning to what a new technology can or will do for us rather than confronting the difficult task of reflecting upon how they might change us or even what ways of life might they undo? The questions we tend to ask as a society are technical, when they should be human.

This 5-day intensive workshop serves as a research and design laboratory for students from across Emily Carr to work on a single theme. Students work in teams collaborating with peers from other disciplines. The workshop explores design as a critical medium through which we can address contemporary and speculative issues related to the social, political, and personal implications of technology. Students explore strategies and practices of critical design turning cultural observation and analysis into design projects with instantiated outcomes. By examining the interplay between technology and humans, students learn to assess and identify social patterns and changes and to communicate those patterns using imaginative design methods.

Each team will undertake social research into the complex relationships we have with technology, before designing and producing a multilayered project that questions, challenges and/or proposes alternatives.

The course is open to third and fourth year students as well as graduate students of Emily Carr.

HUMN 311 S002 – Visual Art Seminar (3)

Mondays, 4:30pm – 7:20pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Vanessa Kwan

Topic: Unsettled Futures

This course begins with the proposition that there is a flourishing outside the bounds of what is (widely) known. Through a selection of readings, presentations and critiques, we will investigate "the future" as a space of speculation and realization for ideas and subjectivities not-yet fully recognized in the present. Drawing on feminist, queer and post-colonial/ indigenous perspectives we will consider the role of art in the production of new spaces of understanding, agency and relationship. Our work will not necessarily focus on political urgency (although that's certainly part of it), but explores what it means to orient art practices around alternative forms of address, production and presentation. How can we make space-- in our practices and in our thinking-- for new vocabularies, citations, structures and associations?

HUMN 311 S003 – Visual Art Seminar (3)

Tuesdays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Mimi Gellman

Topic: Decolonial Aesthetics
Decolonial Aesthetics will explore and link decolonization strategies and aesthetics with the aim of learning to think and see “otherwise.” Through presentations, readings, discussions and art-making we will consider the aesthetic perspectives and philosophies of non-western cultures and explore strategies to decolonize our own lenses. Cree scholar Winona Wheeler explains that decolonization entails, “developing a critical consciousness about the causes of oppression, the distortion of our history, our own collaboration and the degrees to which we have internalized colonialist ideas and practices.” The course will also investigate Indigenous aesthetic realms. The significance of imparting concepts of Indigenous aesthetics to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous scholars has consequences that extend far beyond the aesthetic realm of cultural production. The gift of Indigenous aesthetics is found in its ability to articulate and exemplify the unified nature of reality and as such to offer strategies and ways of thinking and perceiving that can lead us, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to establish an inherently viable, integral and sustainable way of being in the world. The class will begin with theoretical readings and written responses. For the final project, the students will be tasked with creating an artwork that demonstrates a decolonized mind, practice or approach.

HUMN 311 S004 – Visual Art Seminar (3)

Thursdays, 3:50pm – 6:40pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Laiwan

Topic: Tentacular Thought and Creative Practice

This course will examine how to expand perception and consciousness for artistic practice informed by contemporary conditions in the world. Shifting away from bracketed thinking that evolved through Cartesian philosophy, this course will instead guide and nurture skills in how to discover an embodied abundance in the world rooted in a practice of deep listening to phenomena. How do we develop sustainable and resilient practices in perception and consciousness aware of abundance and affective dynamics, rather than be propelled by dominating systems rooted in scarcity and panic? Tentacular thinking is a term used by Donna Haraway in her latest book “Staying With The Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene”. This course will develop practices that investigate valuable proposals in creatively approaching the ‘trouble’ we face with agility, responsibility, and new possibility.

ILUS 208 S001 –Illustration Process: Topics (3)

Tuesdays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Keith Langergraber

Topic: Composition for illustration

This course will focus on the relationship of concept and composition in illustrative practices. Students will develop skills in composition by investigating how line, shape, colour, texture and surface treatment enhance and influence form. Experimentation with a variety of media and projects will allow students to explore aesthetics and meaning by applying the elements and principles of composition within illustration.  The use of language (letters and text) whether by book art, indie comics, zines or even graffiti is one of the new defining features of visual culture. This class will champion visual text and typography allowing language to be manipulated as a physical material through illustration.  Compositional instincts will be developed through the exploration of concrete poetry, zines, artist’s books, independent comics and handmade music album covers and other hybrid forms.

ILUS 208 S002 – Illustration Process: Topics (3)

Wednesdays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Jesse Garbe

Topic: Figure Drawing for Illustrators 

This course concentrates on making illustrations of the human figure using the live model. Parallel to this, the class will also examine the figures relationship to broader cultural concerns, such as one finds in popular culture, cultural theory and art/ illustration history. Projects will focus on developing tools and techniques for depicting the body with each assignment focusing on a different aspect of the figure, such as the face, hands and torso. Topics of discussion will include proportion/ distortion, tonal variation, mark making, anatomy and their relationship to conveying ideas. There will also be regular critiques and discussions to support students in their investigations and to address any practical concerns that arise. A final grade will be based on participation, progress and inventiveness, experimentation and the development of observational, subjective and relevant technical skills. 

ILUS 306 S001 - Illustration Practices: Topics (6)

Wednesdays, 1pm – 7:20pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Daphne Plessner

Topic: Subversive Surface Decoration
This studio course is dedicated to designing patterns and experimenting with surface decoration that engages critically with issues and debates that are important to the student. Each assignment facilitates the development of the content of students' artwork and helps them to synthesize critical content with an aesthetic handling of surface design, colour palettes and pattern design. Equally, students will be encouraged to source and experiment with the choice of objects/surfaces for their decorative, pattern designs. The aim is to encourage students to be adventurous, to challenge conventional notions of taste and to have fun and experiment while also refining their intentions and interests as practitioners.

ILUS 308 S002 – Dialogues with Illustration (6)

Tuesdays, 12:30pm – 6:40pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Jesse Garbe

While there will be considerable attention given to the formal concerns of each student's illustration practice, students will be required to experiment. This spirit of experimentation will not be limited to mediums, techniques and tools, but extended into the realm of ideas. Critiques will place emphasis on praxis, or the integration of theory and practice, and how different strategies can inform and reveal meaning. Throughout the semester, students will be expected to identify a sigular interest, theme, or area of reflection, and return to the task of making illustrations regarding it repeatedly. This will give students the advantage of retackling this task with the support of having an earlier critique. 

MHIS 429 S001 – Topics in Film/Video Theory (3)

Fridays, 12:30pm – 4:30pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Phil Smith

Topic: Television: Genre (and Its Discontents)

It has become a truism bordering on a cliché: “we are living in a golden age of television”. But as with many truisms, there is a solid basis in fact to its formulation and accordingly, this course will examine the medium of television from a number of related perspectives: the history of television as a medium in itself, its synergy with other mediums (cinema in the past, the internet in the present and future), and, in particular, within the context of genre theory, an exploration of the three main genres of contemporary TV entertainment programming: serial drama, comedy, and reality TV (as well as the growing trend toward genre hybrids and variants). Screenings will include feature films about television, documentaries, and episodes of current television offerings (from both broadcast TV and cable/premium/on-line); assignments will include a screening journal, a group presentation, and a term paper.

PNTG 315 S001 – Painting Practices: Topics (6)

Mondays, 1pm – 7:20pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Ingrid Koenig

Topic: What It’s Like to Be a Painting

In this topics-based course students develop self-directed works that investigate forces and hidden dynamics of painting, beginning with generative processes, followed through with strategies such as expansion, riffing, exchange, bridging, and substitution. A conceptual lens for the course includes materializations of thinking, perception and affect in painting.

 

SCIE 300 S001 – Studies in the Sciences (3)

Fridays, 8:30am – 11:20am, Spring 2017

Instructor: Sanem Guvenc-Salgirli

Topic: The Design of Disease

Poisons, pills, corpses, gravediggers, miraculous cures, epidemics, sorcerers… History of medicine is one big ensemble that incorporates all these and more.  This strange and varied history is at the same time entangled with various practices of design: from the architecture of medical and mental institutions to early visualizations of diseases and human anatomy, from X-Rays and MRIs and prostheses to computer generated imagery in films and TV series.

Why is history of disease also the history of humanity? Why do we think of pain through metaphors?  How can poison be a cure as well?  How do representations of diseases affect the way we perceive the world?  Through these questions (and many more!) this course is designed tas a look into the history, sociology and design of medicine through a discussion of a  range of diseases, treatments, and cures. 

SOCS 300 S001 – Studies in the Social Sciences (3)

Mondays, 4:30pm – 7:20pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Colleen Brown

Topic: Life on sidewalks, in malls, and at the park: how to measure the city

Artists, designers, and social scientists are all professional observers. In this course, we will take a tour of some of the most common ways of looking, from direct observation used by Walter Benjamin in the Arcades Project and Jane Jacobs in Death and Life of Great American Cities to the ancient practice of the national census and the experimentation of social movements. Along the way, we will talk about how artists incorporate these techniques in their work.

The social sciences are obsessed with the question of how to observe the ever-changing subject of the social. They have become very canny about how to attend to their subject. We are going to use the city we are in and part of, to practice observational techniques from the social science toolbox and sift through looking for things artists can use. 

SOCS 300 S030 – Studies in the Social Sciences (3)

Hybrid course - online plus one week in-class

Tuesday, February 14 to Saturday, February 18, 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Glen Lowry

Topic: Unsettling Reconciliation in Canada

Borrowing a term from Paulette Regan’s Unsettling the Setter Within: Indian Residential Schools, Truth Telling, and Reconciliation in Canada, this intensive course takes up questions of decolonizing, Indigenizing and unsettling the academy in the wake of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. Beginning from a place within post-secondary art and design education, this course interrogates relationships among settlers and Indigenous peoples in order to explore possibilities for “building new relationships among Aboriginal peoples and all Canadians” (Reconciliation Canada website).

Through both face-to-face meetings from 14 – 18 February 2017 and online fora before and after the five-day intensive, this course seeks opportunities to think through the legacies of Canada’s colonial Indian Residential School System (IRSS) and the contributions of contemporary culture and cultural producers—Indigenous and non-Indigenous. Selected readings, screenings, and visits from writers and artists whose work engages with questions of Reconciliation in Canada will help situate this course while providing space for dialogues about what it means to be socially engaged and responsible artists/designers/media makers in this land now called Canada.

Taught by a non-Aboriginal scholar/editor/writer, this course, which is open to all students, takes up the challenge to all Canadian citizens to respect that the fact that as treaty people, we are bound legally, ethically, and culturally to the nation’s ongoing treaty relations, or what is called fiduciary responsibilities.

Course learning outcomes:

  • Familiarity with discourses around the Indian Residential School System (IRSS) and possibilities for Reconciliation across indigenous and non-indigenous groups in Canada.
  • Awareness of the legal, geo-political and socio-economic legacies of colonialism in Canada, including a basic understanding of the Indian Act, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Treaty history and land claims.
  • An understanding of the power and complexity of Aboriginal anti-colonial resistance and resolution.
  • An ability to consider and engage in an informed dialogue around issues of reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples in Canada.
  • Skills working in groups and engaging in dialogue specific to “difficult knowledge”.
  • An awareness of how to approach decolonizing and indigenizing the university.

SOCS 300 S040 –Studies in the Social Sciences: Topics (3)

Wednesdays, 1pm – 3:50pm, Spring 2017 at North Island College

Instructor: Joanne Lindemulder

Topic: Ideological Whiteness: Analysis and Action
Although, the idea of studying whiteness has been critiqued, the ideology of whiteness continues to structure our society. This course will take an interdisciplinary approach to explore Western cultural constructs of the ideology of Whiteness and examines how this ideology shapes our identities, relationships, and interactions with society. By necessity several complications are considered, and in particular how the idea of normalcy is connected to the way the idea of whiteness is constructed. Topics of inquiry will include: subjectivity, privilege, embodied orientation, essentialism, interpellation, intersectionality, decolonization, as well as criticisms of white studies. The course will also examine the way in which the ideology of whiteness is reflected and reified in art and popular culture.

VAST 310 S001 – Visual Arts: Special Topics (3)

Fridays, 1pm - 3:50pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: Ingrid Koenig

Topic: Leaning Into Quantum Fields

This interdisciplinary studio course interfaces with an art and physics collaboration project called Leaning Out of Windows, where artists and physicists share the quest to understand the nature of reality. Students develop a series of works through a stream of interactions, beginning with a physics concept. The course brings students into conversation with physicists through an interactive space for feedback loops. While they choose their mediums, students explore material-based investigations, responsive art-making strategies and “thought experiments”, to address the barely discernible phenomena studied by quantum physics. The course will also look at how contemporary artists intersect with physics to access diverse modes of understanding.

Students will attend a science presentation and tour at TRIUMF, (Canada’s laboratory for particle and nuclear physics with its cyclotron particle accelerator). They will also participate via internet platform, in a cross-continental artistic interaction with art students at the Berlin Center for Advanced Studies in Arts and Science, University of the Arts, Berlin.

Students do not need a science background. What they do need is an open and flexible approach for an experimental trajectory of interactions amongst their group and other artists and science researchers.

VAST 320 S001R & VAST 420 S001R - Visual Arts Thematic I & II (6)

Tuesdays, 12:30pm – 6:40pm, Spring 2017

Instructor: David MacWilliam

Topic: Colour Projects

Colour is everywhere around us and is a big part of our daily lives. This course will focus on the historical, cultural and social contexts which affect our perception, use and understanding of colour. We will examine the histories of specific colours and learn about scientific innovations and their attendant colour theories. “Case studies” of innovative colour use by contemporary artists and designers will be considered in relation to making our own colour projects.

VAST 310 S040Z – Visual Arts: Special Topics (6) + VAST 410 S040Z - Senior Studio Interdisciplinary (6)

Tuesdays, 9am – 3:50pm, Spring 2017 at North Island College

Instructor: Janice Toulouse + Sara Vipond

Topic: Space and Place
This interdisciplinary studio course will examine the topic of Space and Place.  Concepts of investigation will include: the exploration of 'situate/situation'; the personal, political and social dynamics of spaces and sense of place; participant and spectator relationships; the inherent harmonies and tensions of a 'site'.  Critical readings will accompany an ongoing discussion of individual and community based inquiry.  All mediums and personal practice will be encouraged.  Emphasis will be placed on current Public Art trends, Environmental Arts, Social Practice and Community Engagement.  Flexibility within the topic will be discussed individually based on student proposals.