Special Topics: Theory, Aesthetics and Avant-Garde Art and Architecture
180 Tappan Hall
TuTh 9:00-12:00pm
Spring - 3 Credit Lecture

The avant-gardes turn experimentation into an act of purity, but also politics. These movements seek to bring art beyond the confines of the museum into the revolutionary streets. Theory plays a crucial role in such avant-garde projects because it is required by any avant-gardist who wishes to make art exemplary of the future. A writer of manifesto is needed to articulate, if not define, the avant-garde experimental gesture, and to decree its political force. A critic is needed to make that "statement" comprehensible to the dazed (hostile) public, a philosopher to interpret the new medium opened up through the experimentation, the challenge to art as it has been known. This is as true for painting as for architecture. Through close reading of works of art, attention to art history, and study of related theory, criticism and philosophy, this class will explore the nature of this avant-garde space where image and word demand each other. Assignments: One three page paper due at the mid-term on an assigned topic, and one final research paper due at the end of the class. There will be no final exam. Estimated cost of materials: $100 or more. D. 3, 4

Hausmann, The Spirit of Our Time, 1919