4.341/2 | Introduction to Photography and Related Media: A Visual Diary

Instructor: Jesal Kapadia

TA: Nancy Valladeres

Even a fragment, a small detail, a condensation of infinity of levels…can open up an enormous quantity of worlds.

Using the concept of ‘a roll a day’ to see what we haven’t paid attention to before, and to deconstruct and decode the conditions and times we are living in today, its affections and movements, this course is an invitation to think, feel and play with a curious but a kind camera; to make and read photographs together, take notes, collect thoughts, draw, scavenge for images in the passage of everyday life and turn them into a poem, a letter, a critique, a lament, a revolt, a homage, a fiction, a dream, or even non-sense.

Together we will attempt to leave behind and withdraw from the machine of hyper-representation and information saturation, and decolonize our imaginaries so as to explore other possible narratives that can be told through a daily practice of keeping an other kind of a visual diary: one that contains fragments and leaks, a diary that senses and resonates, but doesn’t communicate.

We will use both analog and digital cameras, as well as camera-less photography to process, edit and print several pictures each week, and trace particular moments, side events, conversations, struggles, resistances, desires, evidences, refusals and revocations, and most of all, the fragile forms of life. We will take the time to create an archive of images that inspire us rather than clutter our storage and thinking. The focus will be to experiment and go beyond the technique of photography, beyond the perfection of representation, and move toward a constant way of seeing and making art through a non-injurious gaze, with a lens open to new ways of relating to one another.

Topics of discussion include – time/narrative, aesthetics/politics, art/struggle, social media/power, race/representation – from both historical as well as contemporary perspectives, and all the worlds that emerge through the work each week. We will follow an organic workflow to develop ideas, along with regular readings, collective exercises, class critiques and walks. There will be artist visits and presentations that will further acquaint us with contemporary art practices, and the potential of long-form photographic work. At the end of the semester we will present the continuous diary form, documenting and discussing the curious, tender, humorous, pointed, ambiguous, absurd, critical, as observed by a personal as well as collective witness.

 

We’re looking for students to delight the sun and chase the shadows, dodge the light to protect the sensible, burn the spectacle, see through the concrete desert, fix the friendships and print photos that speak a thousand tongues.

Students from various disciplines are encouraged to enroll. 35mm and digital SLRs cameras are available for checkout. Limited Enrollment.

Students taking a production-based ACT class will be charged a $75 lab fee after the add date on a semester basis. The fee covers the cost of student production materials used as part of the class. SMACT graduate students are exempt from the lab fee.  

This is a variable unit class. 

 

 

info


  • Units: u 3-3-6, g 3-3-3 or 3-3-6
    Lab Fee: $ 75
  • Credit: hass-a
  • Schedule: TR 2-5
    Location: e15-054