Contemporary Theory in the Visual Arts


Term:  Fall 2013

Course Director          

Marc Couroux
322 J Goldfarb Centre for Fine Arts
couroux [at] yorku [dot] ca
Course consultation hours: by appointment

Time and Location

Wednesday 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM, Goldfarb Fine Arts 338

This graduate seminar is intended as an intensive investigation of current (and historical) theoretical perspectives as they might productively intersect with art practice, at large. The overriding impulse is essentially speculative, geared towards uncovering blindspots within which new forms of praxis can be envisioned. Given the appropriation of the avant-garde by the military-industrial-corporate complex—who has long understood and readily exploited the potential for sensory redistribution which to a large extent determines what is thinkable, perceptible—it is urgent for artists not only to gain a firm grasp on the specific modalities by which power operates, but also to develop speculative practices as “positive feedback”, essential to ejecting from increasingly tight communication and control. Consequently, much of this course will be devoted to directly engaging with the idea of the FUTURE, which has suffered greatly in light of the so-called “end of history”.

Each week, one or two students will be responsible for leading discussion around assigned readings (given the relatively small size of the class, each student will most probably be responsible for two readings).  Given that these readings form the core of the course, I expect that each of you will devote sufficient time to unraveling their various complexities with an eye on developing productive questions to animate group encounters.

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