San Francisco State University: Conceptual Information Arts: Art 410

SFSU: Conceptual Information Arts: ART 410


Course Description: Art 410 is a course about investigating conceptual approaches and critcal thinking in art making and art practice. This course will draw from 20th century art movements; surrealism, dadaism, conceptual art, actionist art, pop art, and new media. This course is designed to explore practical and conceptual approaches to computers in art and software as a medium. The student will be introduced to the main cultural, social, and political themes surrounding and motivating these art movements. Students will create work in the genres of the various 20th century art movements while developing critical points of view and conceptual approaches to a wide variety of media.

Course Prerequisites: Upper Division standing, priority will be given to CIA majors and art majors.

DISCLAIMER: This course is not about software, but conceptual approaches to using software in art making. This course will focus on critical thinking. Students are expected to explore and reflect contemporary and historical cultural theory in their course work.


1. to understand 20th and 21st century art practices

2. to develop a creative process for artmaking

3. to encourage critical thinking

Objectives: The student will learn software and develop conceptual approaches to art making while exploring the nature of these specific art movements. Throughout the semester the student will keep a journal which will document and allow the student to reflect, explore, and develop critical thinking. In addition to smaller weekly assignments the student will work on 2 larger projects, one group oriented project and the other individually created project. Through completing assignments, attending lectures, discussing readings, creating projects, and keeping a journal, the student will manifest his or her own conceptual strategy.

Assessment: All students are expected to read course reader, participate in discussions of these readings, turn in projects on time(on the due date as indicated on the course schedule). Late assignments will be downgraded 1/2 grade per class day it is late. The midterm will be an open book exam, covering material(vocabulary, readings, discussions, lectures) up to the point of the Midterm. Projects, and the Midterm will be graded as quickly as possible. Academic honesty is expected. If you have a learning disability or a special request please discuss this with the instructor as soon as possible, preferably during office hours.

Assignments (3) = 30% Projects(2) = 30% Midterm Journal = 10% Final Journal =10% Participation =20%

****The course schedule is subject to change; appropriate notice will be given for any adjustments.

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