ARTS 1001: Introduction to Contemporary Art and Theory

3 CreditsArts/HumanitiesOnline AvailableRace, Power, and Justice in the United StatesResearch

This course introduces you to contemporary perspectives on art through the lens of race, power, and justice. How has art allowed marginalized people to protest oppression, express joy and defiance, and serve as a cultural space for healing? In what ways does the symbolic, open-ended language of art allow artists to imagine otherwise, conjure different futures, and connect to ancestral pasts that co-mingle with present lived experiences? Course readings center BIPOC voices and focus on issues of representation, cultural appropriation, and decolonization. We look at the emergence of ‘fine art,’ a cultural category steeped in race, power, and the politics of exclusion; the history of the Black art movement and its commitment to political purpose in art; the challenges that arise from the insistence that the political align with the aesthetic. The course explores Indigenous organizing and resurgence as well as the politics of opacity and refusal. We will study socially engaged art forms, Afro- and indigenous futurisms, creative practices that explode distinctions between “traditional” and “modern,” art and craft, and engage with art as a field of cultural expression deeply involved in imagining and demanding social justice.

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All Instructors

A- Average (3.536)Most Common: A (37%)

This total also includes data from semesters with unknown instructors.

1769 students
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  • 3.67


  • 4.19


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  • 3.91



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