On Location: Writing at the MET
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Level: Undergraduate
Division: The New School for Public Engagement
School: MFA Creative Writing Program
Department: Writing Program
Course Number: NWRW 3445
Course Format: Seminar
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
  • Creative Writing
New York City has a long tradition of artistic exchange and collaboration between writers and painters and of exchange between writing and the visual arts]. Kenneth Koch and Larry Rivers, John Ashbery and Jane Freilicher, and James Schuyler and Fairfield Porter were close friends and collaborators. Derek Walcott and e. e. cummings both painted and wrote, and photographers like Rudy Burckhardt documented friends creating art in their studios The class splits its time between The New School, where we share our writing, and the city’s preeminent art museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Students meet at The New School from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., break for lunch, and reconvene on the steps of The Metropolitan Museum of Art at 2:00 p.m. We spend the remaining time exploring its collections and writing flash fiction and “ekphrastic” poems, prose poems, and flash fiction responding to art. We spend the first week writing in The Met’s European Painting Galleries, Sculpture Courts, Medieval Art and Armor Collection, and Costume Institute. The second week is devoted to writing in the 20th Century Wing, Contemporary Art and Photography Galleries, Asian and Islamic wings, Rooftop Outdoor Projects, and Egyptian Collections. On the final Thursday of the course, the class visits and writes at the nearby Neue Galerie, located at Fifth Avenue and 86th Street, then enjoys a picnic and an outdoor reading in Central Park.
Course Open to: Degree Students