School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Film, Video, New Media and Animation 4830 001
Wednesday 9:00 AM–4:00 PM
Spring 2014, January 29–May 9

Paul Hertz, Instructor

saic: Paul Hertz
tw: ignotus_mago
fb: ignotus_mago
flickr: ignotus
ut: Ign0tu5
vimeo: user11207883

Syllabus in PDF format


About the course

Students should meet departmental prerequisites or have the instructor's permission to take this course. They should have a basic familiarity with programming techniques in any language and with HTML page creation and editing.

The Software exhibition, curated by Jack Burnham at the Jewish Museum in 1970, reconfigured the relation of art to idea through the metaphor of “software.” For Burnham, “software” was analogous to the aesthetic and conceptual context of an art work, while the work itself was “hardware”: “hardware and software mutually affect and interact, determining each other’s nature for a given problem.” Computer art pioneer Frieder Nake viewed the interaction between [software | code | concept] and [hardware | production | art] as open and malleable to such an extent that the computer could be understood as a semiotics engine, producing sheaves of signs from a single generative application.

Using a variety of free, open source media applications and commercial applications available at SAIC, the Artware course will examine the shifting relationships between concept and realization, code and production. Because distribution and community are an essential part of both freeware and art, the course will include a study of the social context of open source art and open source software, with consideration of how careers in new media art may be constructed through “outsider” channels and communities.

In this studio course students will learn aspects of the JavaScript and Java computer languages, the authoring environments Processing and MaxMSP/Jitter, and libraries such as of WebGL. We will emphasize hacking and code modding as a learning style whose goal is the creation and distribution of New Media Art works. Artware projects such as GlitchSort by Paul Hertz, ExtraFile by Kim Asendorf and the Satromizer by Ben Syverson and Jon Satrom will be featured.

New Media Art, i.e. Glitch
Software Cultures, licensing via FLOSS, COPY-IT-RIGHT, (X), etc
Media Cultures, i.e. Appropriation and Remix
Distribution Networks, i.e. the Internet, Google Play, iTunes App Store, etc
Software Development and Design cycles, i.e. packages, versioning, forking, etc
Communities of practice, i.e. GitHub

Classroom at Open Processing
Other resources and class materials will be listed in SAIC's Canvas Portal.