OPTICAL ART

Concepts in Photography: THE CAMERA AND VISUAL THINKING IN STUDIO PRACTICE
Ruth Dusseault

FINE ART PHOTOGRAPHY + PRE-CINEMA TECHNOLOGIES + DIGITAL MEDIA

striations from steve roden on Vimeo.

Steve Roden, Striations
Steve Roden, 2 boxes of junk that belonged to Martha Graham

This is not a course syllabus, but a study site. It is based on my own experiences teaching photography in a multi-discipline setting, and on my research on other photography programs across the country that have successfully translated the lessons of traditional photography into contemporary pedagogy. PAGES LISTED ON SIDE ARE MEANT TO WORK AS A "SALAD BAR" OF COURSE UNITS. Depending on existing departmental curricula, they might be used in courses like VISUAL THINKING, CONCEPTS IN PHOTOGRAPHY or PHOTO HISTORY.

Optical Art: Concepts in Photography is a continuation of several courses that I have designed as Artist in Residence at Georgia Tech's College of Design. My students had access to a chemical darkroom, a computer lab and equipment that is now commonly found in a maker space.

Within each unit, we explore 17th, 18th and 19th century optical innovations alongside new visual technologies, from the Phantasmagora to the Oculus Rift, without feeling any speed bump between centuries. The objective is to avoid a narrative of "past and future," and bypass any hierarchical connotations. Instead we will focus on ways of seeing, perceiving and knowing.