56. “Art School: (Propositions for the 21st Century)” edited by Steven Henry Madoff

This week, being the final week of Spring Semester and a celebratory and exciting time on campus as we congratulate our graduating students (and admire their work and talents), our thoughts have turned to the educational experience students have at OCAC and in art school more broadly. Because we’re a small, mentor-based art school, many of us have and have had the privilege to watch our students develop as makers over the course of many years. It’s certainly the most rewarding part of working at a library that tries to help serve them as they progress as makers and fine artists. With these thoughts in mind, we’ve elected to pick Art School edited by Steven Henry Madoff as this week’s library pick. It is a fascinating book — especially for anyone who has attended art school or has been involved in teaching art. Not only can it serve as a means of contextualizing an institution’s efforts, but it also helps identify a school’s successes as well as providing ideas worth considering for growth opportunities to serve the emerging artists of the 21st century!

Here’s how the publisher describes Art School: “the last explosive change in art education came nearly a century ago, when the German Bauhaus was formed. Today, dramatic changes in the art world–its increasing professionalization, the pervasive power of the art market, and fundamental shifts in art-making itself in our post-Duchampian era–combined with a revolution in information technology, raise fundamental questions about the education of today’s artists. Art School (Propositions for the 21st Century) brings together more than thirty leading international artists and art educators to reconsider the practices of art education in academic, practical, ethical, and philosophical terms. The essays in the book range over continents, histories, traditions, experiments, and fantasies of education. Accompanying the essays are conversations with such prominent artist/educators as John Baldessari, Michael Craig-Martin, Hans Haacke, and Marina Abramovic, as well as questionnaire responses from a dozen important artists–among them Mike Kelley, Ann Hamilton, Guillermo Kuitca, and Shirin Neshat–about their own experiences as students. A fascinating analysis of the architecture of major historical art schools throughout the world looks at the relationship of the principles of their designs to the principles of the pedagogy practiced within their halls. And throughout the volume, attention is paid to new initiatives and proposals about what an art school can and should be in the twenty-first century–and what it shouldn’t be. No other book on the subject covers more of the questions concerning art education today or offers more insight into the pressures, challenges, risks, and opportunities for artists and art educators in the years ahead. Contributors include: Marina Abramovic, Dennis Adams, John Baldessari, Ute Meta Bauer, Daniel Birnbaum, Saskia Bos, Tania Bruguera, Luis Camnitzer, Michael Craig-Martin, Thierry de Duve, Clémentine Deliss, Charles Esche, Liam Gillick, Boris Groys, Hans Haacke, Ann Lauterbach, Ken Lum, Steven Henry Madoff, Brendan D. Moran, Ernesto Pujol, Raqs Media Collective, Charles Renfro, Jeffrey T. Schnapp, Michael Shanks, Robert Storr, and Anton Vidokle.” From (here)

Check it out!

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6 thoughts on “56. “Art School: (Propositions for the 21st Century)” edited by Steven Henry Madoff

  1. Thanks for the post. The book seems really interesting. I’m certainly going to check it out. My wife begins her Applied Craft and Design MFA this Fall, so I imagine she’ll be into it as well.

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