Education Summer Institute
Intensive workshops by visiting artists focused on skills and concepts that will have lasting effects on practice and thinking
2018 May 19-20 and 26-27, Sa-Sun (over two weekends)
As graphics hardware continues to improve and become more ubiquitous, we no longer need bulky, expensive computers to produce complex real-time renderings. From color correction to generative particle effects, we can now create and manipulate 2D and 3D graphics directly in our web browsers. Just as the hardware has become more accessible, the use of higher-level programming languages has virtually destroyed the barrier of entry for non-programmers. This summer course will provide an introduction to programming concepts via graphics and image processing, leveraging cutting-edge technologies such as Three.js, WebVR, and GLSL.
The primary focus will be project-based, taking place in a lab-style setting. We will use the aforementioned technologies to both generate and manipulate existing 2D and 3D graphical content. There will also be plenty of time to demo and discuss the generative and procedural work of several accomplished software artists such as Lillian Schwartz, Ken Knowlton, David Rokeby, and Takeshi Murata, contextualizing their practice within the larger discourses of digital art, computational analysis, and graphics programming.
We will begin by covering the basics of programming, and will move on to other topics such as 3D geometry, user interaction, rendering, and post-processing via shaders. Prior programming experience is certainly not necessary, but some knowledge of image or video editing will be a plus.
2018 May 29-June 2, T-Sa, 9:30am-5:30pm
This intensive workshop will dive into the process of generating a body of work through the appropriation and repurposing of pre-existing archives. Topics covered will include: finding a through-line of research and/or visual interest; exploring tools—analog and digital—for the reproduction, alteration, and display of visual material; and creating and managing a digital archive of one’s own. Demos will cover studio lighting and staging for still life and portrait photographs, hi-resolution scanning, the use of the VSW’s archival tools for reproduction and display, and using Photoshop for collage and design. The workshop will also include discussions of relevant contemporary artists and thinkers who are working with archives, including Erik Kessels, Hito Steyerl, and Boris Groys.
2018 June 4-8, M-F, 9:30am-5:30pm
This workshop employs the basic tools and techniques of hand bookbinding for artists to make a unique product tailored to the physical and conceptual needs of your images. We will make a series of unique book structures that accommodate single sheets, folded folios and gathered sections, while exploring the materials of traditional book making. Strategies for repurposing pre-bound print-on-demand projects will be introduced. We will also construct a two-tray drop-spine Solander style box which can be used for storing prints, protecting a fine binding or packaging samples made in the workshop.
The class will focus primarily on physical considerations of the book, but participants are welcome to bring work in progress or ideas for books. Some time will be devoted to discussing how binding structures and layout strategies literally as well as figuratively support image display.
2018 June 11-15, M-F, 9:30am-5:30pm
Empathy, as a gesture to identify with the experiences and conditions of others, can be wielded by artists to create worlds that challenge complexity in community structures, systems, and/or themselves. bell hooks, in a conversation with Alison Saar, offers that ”Imagining [is] a way to be empathic, to move into worlds we have not experienced yet have come to understand…”.
We will focus on the works of several contemporary visual artists and discuss how they are using history, fiction and autobiography within their art practice to connect to their audiences. Students will be asked to create a work that responds to the experience of another or promotes a deeper understanding of their own practice. The work may be visual, poetry, sound installation, etc. There will be time for presentations and discussion on the final workshop day.
2018 June 18-22, M-F, 9:30am-5:30pm
From the time of the American Revolution to contemporary campaigns like Black Lives Matter and Fight for 15, posters, visual culture, and printmakers have been involved in every social movement this country has ever seen. Screenprinting is an accessible, affordable, and efficient way of producing large quantities of large scale printed matter for a variety of purposes including political activism. In this class students will learn the nuts and bolts of screenprinting, look at a variety of approaches to using visual media as part of organizing strategies and produce a finished run of multi colored posters.
2018 June 25-29, M-F, 9:30am-5:30pm
In this unique workshop participants will be introduced to the camera based Xerox flat plate process, learn about its history, and gain hands-on experience crafting carbon based photographic images. Unlike a modern copy machine the early Xerox process involves photographing (using a large format camera) and processing entirely by hand. Using the flat-plate system all image adjustments and retouching can be done in a light not darkroom!
Charging, exposing, developing, transferring and finally fusing all must be carried out by the user. Because the process is broken down into separate steps there are many opportunities for adjustments and aesthetic alterations to the image prior to printing. The opportunity for hands-on manipulation have led some to refer to the process as true “photographic drawing.”
We will start by making images the same way Chester Carlson first made his breakthrough discovery that was later developed into the Xerographic process. During the workshop we will use 11”x14” Xerox cameras and charging units to develop our photographs. We will also use modifications to the process to transfer images to various papers and surfaces. We will experiment with image manipulation, multiple image transfer and even color. This carbon based process is entirely archival so long as archival papers are used.
The Xerox flat plate system (electrophotography) is relatively unknown in the history of photography. One of the reasons for this is that it was never intended to be used as a creative tool for artist and photographers. It was developed to make copies of office documents. It’s not daguerreotype, wet plate, dry plate, gelatin silver film, polaroid, or digital… it’s something entirely different.