Are most forms of contemporary artistic practice rooted in the art of remixing?
Where do our ideas come from? Are they really "ours" or are they part of a wider, shared network of variable practices? Where do we find the source material that we turn to when creating new works of art? What role does intuition play in our selection of source material and how do contemporary artists manipulate their source material for aesthetic effect?
The Remix Culture seminar investigates the emergence of interdisciplinary media art practices that experiment with the art of remixing. Some of the methods and formats we may explore include literary cut-ups and procedural composition, image appropriation, Internet or net.art, sound art, glitch, collage film, installation art, live A/V performance (DJ, VJ, Webspinna), culture jamming / hactivism, and other art forms that engage with renewable source material. The seminar will study how practice-based research methods in contemporary art integrate experimental form, content and theory into the mix. This means that during the course you will be required to read, write, surf the web, and generally expand your concept of what it means to be a remix artist who selectively samples and manipulates data across the network.
Thematically, we will place particular emphasis on recent inquiries into rhythm science, postproduction art, pla(y)giarsm, (digital) détournement, culture jamming, and remixology.
Students will conduct individual and collaborative projects that empower them to experiment with text, digital imaging, sound, video, and other media.
Many of the subjects we investigate will blend into each other as we investigate how developing an interdisciplinary media arts practice is less about the technology one uses or the genres they filter their creativity through, and more about turning the artist into a remix medium (Duchamp) or instrument (Acconci) whose own stylistic tendencies can be applied across a variety of media genres and platforms.
We will also look at how artists develop their own theories and parallel poetics as part of their emerging practice. In this regard, one of our main goals will be to develop a vocabulary and cluster of ideas that will help us articulate what remixology (the practice based study of remix art and culture) is and how it can be used to critically challenge conventional art-making, writing, and curatorial practices.
The course is both practice based and theory driven. This means that you will be required to read articles and short e-books and experiment with your own theoretical expressions via a series of blog entries. These blog entries must be approached with the same rhetorical and writing skills you would use when writing a traditional paper but may include other media as well, including images, sounds, video and links to relevant websites.
TWO RULES TO PLAY BY:
1. Unless you are instructed otherwise, this course does not require you to search check your phone, email and social media accounts during class.
2. It is absolutely essential that you attend class. Since we only meet one day a week and have two holidays that coincide with our course this semester, we will only have a total of fourteen class meetings. Prior experience teaching this course consistently reveals that those who attend all of the classes and finish all of their work on time perform the best. There will be no unexcused absences (each unexcused absence will result in a half-grade drop). Only one excused absence per semester. After that, each absence will result in a half-grade drop. Also be aware that coming to class late and/or leaving class early will affect your grade as well (two days of leaving early or arriving late counts as an unexcused absence). Being prompt and staying the course are required.
You will be evaluated on your participation in the class, your blog entries, your attendance, and your class projects as follows:
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