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    Ways of Seeing: Storytelling Through Photography | DIS

    Ways of Seeing: Storytelling Through Photography (A)

    Spring 2017 Copenhagen

    3 Credit Major Disciplines: Communications, Photography, Visual Arts, Art History

    Faculty Member: Johanna Wolfe, johannawolfe@mac.com Program Director: Iben de Neergaard, Vestergade 10 A23, idn@dis.dk

    Assistant Program Director: Nya Oxfeldt Jensen, Vestergade 10 A23, njo@dis.dk Program Assistant: Jenny Han, Vestergade 10 A23, yh@dis.dk

    Mondays & Thursdays 11.40 13.00

    Location: N7-C25

    Course Description Study abroad often serves as a key experience and a turning point in your understanding of the world. This class is an effort to make sense of your study abroad stay: rather than creating photographs as mementos, you will make pictures that are unique to your stay in Copenhagen, but still refer back to your life in general. It is not enough to point a camera at a tourist site or use it to make Facebook or Instagram images. You will be encouraged to view your new environment not through the lens of an outsider viewing a novelty, but to give us, as viewers, special access to your world. This class combines a studio critique and a survey of the history and theory of photography. You will engage with the medium of photography while at the same time learning about the historical tradition that your pictures reference. While the artistic practice is almost entirely self-directed, you will participate in weekly critiques in order to gain a deeper understanding of your own photographs, as well as those of your colleagues. Using the basic tools of photography a camera, time and light you will learn to responsibly and concisely discuss your work. Critique focuses on intentionality and embedded meaning, while studying the history of photography places your work in the context of this relatively young medium. Course Format Each weeks Monday class, starting the third week of the term, will be used for critique. Each weeks Thursday class will include a lecture on photographers and themes specific to the readings. You will find 2-3 themes/ideas relevant to each weeks readings that will be used to generate discussion topics. Two students per week will give presentations (approx. 10-15 minutes) on an individual photographer related to, but not actually cited in, the given topic. Each student will present twice over the course of the semester. You will choose your preferred presentation topics after the first class, and will select your photographers from a compiled list. Course Instructor Johanna Wolfe received an M.F.A. in visual arts in 2010 and a B.A. in art history in 2002, both from Columbia University. She has worked in various media-based fields, including publishing, film festivals, and television, where she produced observational documentary series for major cable networks. Upon receiving her MFA, she began teaching photography at the undergraduate level. Her photographs have been exhibited in New York and throughout the United States, and in 2012 she opened a communal analog darkroom, Radiant Labs, in Long Island City, New York.


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    Ways of Seeing: Storytelling Through Photography | DIS

    Field Studies Wednesday, 15 February 13.00 17.00 Wednesday, 19 April 8.30 12.30 Course Requirements During the first session, the class will be divided into two groups for the purpose of critique. Each group will be critiqued every other week, starting the third week. Students must have at least 8-10 images (jpg or tiff) for each critique, and must be prepared to talk about all of them. Photos may not be submitted for critique more than once, unless in the case of a round two critique, which must be accompanied by a written proposal. Throughout the course of the semester, students from each group will either have critique or make photographer presentations each week. Artist presentations (in the form of a slideshow or PowerPoint) should be emailed no later than the day they are presented. Students work toward the completion of a final portfolio of 8-10 photographs and an accompanying artist statement. There will be a Final Show on May 8, for which all students are expected to prepare 2-3 images for inclusion. Learning Objectives - You will gain a deeper understanding of the cultural impact of the medium of photography in an art

    historical context, and you will be able to locate your own work in relation to that tradition. - You will learn how to manipulate a camera with agility and create the pictures you want to make, in

    terms of technique, form and content. - You will engage in the language of photographic critique both of your own work and that of your

    fellows and be able to thoughtfully describe the meaning of a photograph. - You will generate a personal artist statement that is at once concise and legible. - You will develop a new sensitivity to looking at the world through the lens of a camera. Grade Components Critique 20% Presentations 20% Midterm 20% Participation 20% Final Portfolio 10% Artist Statement 10% Attendance at all class sessions is mandatory. Two unexcused absences will warrant a reduced letter grade. Three unexcused absences will result in failure. In order to be eligible for a passing grade in the class, all work must be submitted. The use of distracting devices (smartphones, laptops, etc.) is strictly prohibited during class. Failure to comply will adversely affect participation grades. NOTE: Students are expected to bring their own camera, preferably a DSLR, that is capable of shooting in a fully manual mode. Disability and resource statement Any student who has a need for accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact the Office of Academic Support (acadsupp@dis.dk) to coordinate this. In order to receive accommodations, students should inform the instructor of approved DIS accommodations within the first two weeks of classes.


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    Ways of Seeing: Storytelling Through Photography | DIS

    Weekly Schedule Session 1: Thursday, 19 January Introduction & syllabus review; divide class into Groups A & B Readings: Robert Adams, Colleagues from Why People Photograph HW: email top three choices for presentations Session 2: Monday, 23 January Technical overview & photographys context Readings: James Elkins, selection from Art Critiques: A Guide Lisa LeFeuvre, Introduction, Failure Christy Lange, Seven Subjects You Shouldnt Photograph HW: email artist selections for presentations Session 3: Thursday, 26 January Intention and meaning; Sample critique exercises social media photography? Readings: John Berger, Chapter 1 from Ways of Seeing Session 4: Monday, 30 January First Critique, Group A (optional: critique by proxy or prescribed meaning) Readings: Alan Trachtenberg, selection from Camera Work/Social Work John Szarkowski, Introduction to Atget Session 5: Thursday, 2 February Lecture on Early Photography and Photo-Secession Artist Presentations CORE COURSE WEEK: No classes 6 & 9 February

    Session 6: Monday, 13 February First Critique, Group B (optional: critique by proxy or prescribed meaning) Readings: Alexander Rodchenko, The Paths of Modern Photography Berenice Abbott, It Has to Walk Alone and Photography at the Crossroads FIELD STUDY: Wednesday, 15 February Visit with Henrik Capetillo, Meeting Location TBA, 13.00 17.00 Session 7: Thursday, 16 February Lecture on New Vision / New Objectivity Artist Presentations Session 8: Monday, 20 February Critique, Group A Readings: Interview, Walker Evans, The Thing Itself Is Such a Secret and So Unapproachable Abigail Solomon-Godeau, Who Is Speaking Thus: Some Questions about Documentary Photography James Agee, Introduction to A Way of Seeing

    Session 9: Thursday, 23 February Lecture on Social Documentary and the American Tradition Artist Presentations TRAVEL BREAK: No classes 27 February & 2 March


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    Ways of Seeing: Storytelling Through Photography | DIS

    Session 10: Monday, 6 March Critique, Group B Readings: Roland Barthes, selection from Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography Henri Cartier-Bresson, The Decisive Moment from The Minds Eye Session 11: Thursday, 9 March Lecture on European Documentary Approaches Artist Presentations Session 12: Monday, 13 March Critique, Group A Reading: John Szarkowski, The Photographers Eye

    Session 13: Thursday, 16 March Midterm in-class writing assignment TRAVEL BREAK: No classes 20 March & 23 March

    Session 14: Monday, 27 March Critique, Group B Readings: Jack Kerouac, Introduction to The Americans John Szarkowski, Introduction to Winogrand: Figments from the Real World Session 15: Thursday, 30 March Lecture on The New Document Artist Presentations Session 16: Monday, 3 April Critique, Group A Readings: In Platos Cave from Susan Sontag, On Photography Moyra Davey, Notes on Photography & Accident from Long Life Cool White

    Session 17: Thursday, 6 April Lecture on Writers & Photographers; Editing and sequencing Students bring work from final portfolio Artist statement interviews Session 18: Monday, 10 April Critique, Group B Readings: Andy Grundberg, selections from Crisis of the Real Stephen Shore, selection from The Nature of Photographs

    TRAVEL BREAK: No classes 13 & 17 April FIELD STUDY: Wednesday, 19 April Visit to N


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