FAS450Y5Y (LandMarks 2017 special topics course)
In this directed study, students undertake two semesters of independent research under the mentorship of an Art and Art History studio faculty member. Students develop and present a body of artwork for discussion, evaluation and exhibition. The course is modeled on a Master's special topics course and as such provides the students with the experience needed to pursue Master of Fine Arts candidacy, their own art, and teaching careers. Advanced Project students must have a B+ standing in the fourth year of the studio discipline in which they intend to submit a proposal. A written proposal must be submitted to, and approved by, the department before registration. [144P]
FAS450Y5Y (LandMarks 2017 special topics course) is structured around the LandMarks network of collaborative, contemporary art projects to take place in Parks Canada places during the 150th year of Canadian Confederation. The course leans toward a decentralized approach to focus on land, peoples, communities and utilizes art to instigate new ways to understanding the roles and representations of landscape in contemporary art.
LandMarks 2017 involves research and production of art by a class of students. The goal of the course is the production of individual works and collaborative projects which will culminate in participation in a national exhibition from June 10 to June 25, 2017
In consultation with the Assigned Curator, Tania Willard, and under the direction of faculty member, Professor Arnold Koroshegyi, the class will work toward two exhibitions. The first exhibition will be held in April 2017 and it will showcase student works created during the academic year. These works will be the result of, and response to, the topics, readings, site visits, research, in class as well as from the collaboration and consultation with professional curator, Tania Willard. Attending artist talks at OCAD and/or Sheridan College with artists, Cheryl L’Hirondelle, Camille Turner, Simon Pope and Tania Willard will serve as a creative stimulus and motivation for the students in the course. The resulting artwork will be shown in a professional venue and made visible through a digital platform (website, catalogue/artist multiple, etc.)
The second and final exhibition will include selected individual works and collaborative projects to be exhibited in one of the assigned Parks Canada places or in a related National Historic sites The site of the exhibition as well as the scale will be determined as the course unfolds and develops but will take place from June 10 to June 25, 2017. The core projects will be researched, developed and implemented by the participating students. Much like the LandMarks2017 network of art projects, the student works will feature the connection to land among diverse Canadian communities.
Showcasing a multiplicity of voices, the students’ art will seek to engage our relationship to nature in a time of deep environmental crises, in an era where history is questioned, and when belief systems are re-examined. This final exhibition offers the next generation of artists the opportunity to showcase their emerging work in a natural/historic setting that engages the land directly and is seen by a broad public. Students are also encouraged to use social media alongside their artwork to document the progress and evolution of their work.
The students will have the opportunity to engage directly with two Parks Canada places: the Thousand Islands National Park (ON) and the Rouge National Urban Park (ON). Guest artists and experts will be invited to give students guided lectures engaging the environment/nature, and provide thematic workshops.
Students will also be offered the possibility to engage with another local national historic sites relevant to the course such as the shores of Lake Ontario to explore where and how First Nations engaged in the Hopewell exchange system. The Hopewell tradition and system of trade and cultural exchange along widely dispersed waterways is particularly interesting to launch a discussion around the notion of social imprint on landscape. The extensive and complex trading networks and systems of cultural exchange that existed 2000 years ago among different yet inter-connected societies may be seen/explored through a contemporary lens (e.g. a modern parallel to social media as a virtual journey through landscape or global trade routes as methods of social exchange, etc.) in this course. Here, students may wish to consider contemporary examinations of the lengthy and evolving history of peoples’ cultural, social and spiritual relationships to land, especially among those communities left on the margins, or totally outside of, official history.
Participating artists include Cheryl L’Hirondelle and Camille Turner. Both Cheryl and Camille work in “freedom tours”, narrative tours that embrace alternate histories and that put forth alternative futures centring around indigenous knowledge and black diaspora.
Artist Simon Pope, whose body of work engages the memory of land through an experiential walking art practice, will develop a thematic workshop for LandMarks students and a guided lecture/hike through and within the Rouge Urban National park.
LandMarks2017 curator Tania Willard will also give a guest lecture as well as review projects and assist with course instructors in selecting projects and sites for the June 10th-25th 2017 exhibition period.
During the LandMarks 2016-17 course, students will be expected to:
- develop a conceptually rigorous and experimental studio practice
- collaborate with artists during the research and art-making phases
- participate in seminar discussions, workshops and site visits
- develop a critical vocabulary relevant to visual art issues/topics around the curatorial agenda outlined by Landmarks curators and Sheridan faculty member
- develop the ability to contextualize their practice within contemporary art
- develop work for presentation in an online digital platform
- research and engage with contemporary LandMarks subject matter (environment, history, culture)
- develop an independent body of work
LandMarks 2017 course will provide the students the unique and excellent opportunity to connect with natural and historic environments, learn from differing voices, under-recognized societies and perspectives while creating art that fosters dialogue, critical thinking and social engagement. It’s a tremendous occasion for Canadians to celebrate the complex connection to land and to re-examine our collective past, to explore peoples and communities on the margins of official history, through thought-provoking, creative, collaborative art work on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of Canadian Confederation.
i. 1 - The Culture of Nature: North American Landscape from Disney to the Exxon Valdez. Alexander Wilson, 1991
ii. 2 - Nature and Culture: Rebuilding Lost Connections, by Sarah Pilgrim (Editor), Jules N. Pretty (Editor)
iii. 3 - Balance: Art and Nature, by John Grande, 2003