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Tuesday 15.09.2020

Theoretical Thinking and Writing in Art - Online Course by Node Center

Theoretical Thinking and Writing in Art
Node Center for Curatorial Studies Berlin


Duration: Oct 08 - Oct 29, 2020 Enrol before: Oct 4, 2020 Lecturer: An Paenhuysen Participation Fee: 154€


Node Center for Curatorial Studies Berlin
Wrangelstr. 5
10997 Berlin

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What is the purpose of art? What can art achieve? Why does it matter? In this course we do exercises in thinking and writing about art on a more abstract level. At first sight, art theorization might appear as a very dry, stiff, tough, and academic thing to do, a seeming negation of imagination and fantasy. Yet in the course we experiment with an art theorization that playfully stretches our thinking and writing about art. Maya Angelou called it 'deep talk': 'When you read me, you should be able to say, Gosh, that's pretty. That's lovely. That's nice. Maybe there's something else? Better read it again.'

The course is not set up as a lecture about art theory but instead it will train you to think critically and lead you through the creative process of developing an art theory: from understanding the broader conceptual context and keenly looking at art, to formulating an impactful argument and developing a language to present it. It is praxis-oriented and asks students to engage during the course. Weekly home assignments are required.

*Video conferences every Thursday at 3pm CET. Recordings will be available in case you miss a live session!

-Duration: Oct 08 - Oct 29, 2020
-Enrol before: Oct 4, 2020
-Lecturer: An Paenhuysen
-Participation fee: 154 euros




Week 1: Thinking in art
What is a theorist? What questions does an ask theorist ask? This first class we will do reading and thinking exercises to find out what we want to say about art and which possible approaches there are to say it. We look at some different ways of art theoretical writing.

Week 2: Beauty
'What beauty is, that I don't know.' so Albrecht Dürer said. Beauty is a concept that has to be defined again and again. There is no such thing as a constant beauty. What is taste, what is aesthetics?

Week 3: Ethics
In 'Advice to the Young', Laurie Anderson says she became an artist to be free. Is the art world free? Are there ethical boundaries in art? Is the art world a parallel society that refuses to integrate?

Week 4: Future / Avant-garde
What is the value of art? Does it bring humankind further? How can art influence the present and future? Can art be avant-garde? Some big questions we try to touch upon.