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Visual Culture art ed questions


From: dawn stien (dawnstien_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Fri May 03 2002 - 23:34:40 PDT

I learned a little bit about deaf culture while taking
sign language. I got pop culture without a hitch.
Visual Culture is altogether allusive to me beyond the
fact that I’m somehow immerged in it. I would really
be thrilled if anyone could help decipher some of
this. (I’ve been compiling the sources sited lately,
but won’t have time to truly dive in until summer.
I’m afraid the thread will have altogether frayed by
then-or something like that.)

I had to come up with a planning continuum for a class
a while back and it baffled me then. Some concepts
for exemplars (Bates book terminology, but not her
idea to use visual culture) my classmates came up with
were graffiti, cereal boxes, magazine covers, soda
cans, toys, ads and movies. Is this what “we’re”
talking about in this correspondence?

It seems to me, these topics are fall-out from
outsider and pop art traditions. It seems like the
remainder approach advertising issues to me. Is
visual culture like a catch-all term? Is this what
the semiotic issue is???

Does Visual Culture as an approach, try to address a
so-called increasingly visual society?

I had a photo prof who photographed what he termed
visual chaos – the overwhelming bombardment of signs,
businesses, churches, etc. that are prevalent in
cities. I think Raushchenberg’s photos also reflect a
particular way of seeing the world as well. Is this
part of “Visual Culture”?

Does it have anything to do with the tradition of
bringing “ordinary” objects into the art realm like
Duchamp, or even Barnes and Dewey? Does it try to
break with museum/art as “sacred”? Is this even an

If I don’t grasp it, I’m not sure that I can teach it.
 But then again, if its part of our culture than
surely it emerges in the student’s work – that’s where
I learned of the “spongy” guy, too. Do those of you
who address this in class, tie it into art history or
let it be in its own right?

That’s all for now, Dawn in Houston


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