New Media Art History
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Level: Undergraduate, Graduate
Division: Parsons The New School for Design
School: School of Art, Media and Technology
Department: Design and Technology
Course Number: PGTE 5587
Course Format: Seminar
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
  • Art History, Theory & Criticism
  • Cultural Studies
  • Visual Culture
Theories of new media art and the attempts to delineate its history often foreground the novelty of image production brought about through digitization (from which the critique on its cultural, political and economical implications) as the constitutive characteristic of new media art. Such theorizations therefore invariably premise their projects as an extension of a theory of image (with an account of audio / sound art as the supplementary), its history an expansion or augmentation of that of visual art. This course sets out to explore a radically different proposition of new media art, one that understands its disruptive as well as transformative capacity by transgressing the convention of visual language. While acknowledging new media art’s genealogical roots in the tradition of the historical avant-garde and its intertwining co-evolution with the latter’s numerous bifurcations and incarnations that have laid the ground for the ensuing proliferation of contemporary art practices, the central thesis of this course is to bring to light the qualities and competencies that set new media art apart from the ocularcentrist imperative and its sign producing cultural production. By synthesizing some of the most provocative philosophical positions on the current environmental, technological, and biomedical realities, this course elucidates a theory of presence, sensation, embodiment and action as new conceptual possibilities for art making. Through readings, analysis of seminal works, writing assignments and discussions in conjunction with topical lectures, we try to achieve an understanding of the unique position that new media art occupies within but also distinct from the broad scheme of contemporary art production and an understanding of its critical relevance and creative potential in articulating and advancing artistic and cultural inquiries in the context of a post-industrial, posthuman society in which we live.
Course Open to: Degree Students with Restrictions
Course Pre/Co-requisites:
Open to: Masters degree in Design & Technology majors; others by permission of Design & Technology program.