Parsons School of Design: School of Art, Media, and Tech

Non-Liberal Arts
Undergraduate Course
Degree Students
xStudio: Waste MATTER
Spring 2024
Taught By: Nadja Frank
Section: A

CRN: 2074

Credits: 3

The climate crisis is a complex issue and addressing it in art making requires a multidisciplinary approach. In this class we will work towards re-envisioning matter mostly known as garbage/waste, which is generated in the moment of transition (from valued object to waste) through everyday, and often unconscious, consumption. We will explore theoretical texts concerning the history of waste and our “throwaway culture”. Waste has been a recurring theme in the making of art and functional objects, both in contemporary and historical contexts. Artists have always utilized waste and discarded materials as a means of exploring various aspects of society, the environment, consumerism, and more. Marcel Duchamp’s ready-mades were among the first to challenge conventional ideas about materiality, and now contemporary artists often use waste matter to draw attention to environmental issues. Artists like Vik Muniz, Rirkrit Tiravanija, El Anatsui, Thomas Hirschhorn, Tracy Emin, Duchamp and Niki de Saint Phalle made significant contributions by using found objects and waste materials. The main focus will be an interdisciplinary approach to “making”. Making use of recycled/upcycled/industrial waste material and found objects, the projects we will work on can range from wearables (clothes) to functional objects, sculptures, installations to wall pieces made from transformed matter. This process will not only be a practical one but will also highlight the potential for reusing and repurposing materials to reduce waste. We will also explore ideas of sustainability, the creation of works that may only have a limited “life span” (natural materials and biodegradable objects) and immaterial work that is research based. The course will include site visits to museums, galleries and lectures to bolster our understanding. “Everything goes back into the earth either as food or poison”

Open to: All University undergraduate students. Some seats have been reserved for BFA Fine Arts students and Integrated Design Students.

College: Parsons School of Design (PS)

Department: School of Art, Media, and Tech (AMT)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Studio (S)

Modality: In-Person

Max Enrollment: 15

Add/Drop Deadline: February 4, 2024 (Sunday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 16, 2024 (Tuesday)

Seats Available: Yes

* Seats available but reserved for a specific population.

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every few minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 5:20pm EDT 4/19/2024

Meeting Info:
Days: Thursday
Times: 12:10pm - 2:50pm
Building: Academic Entrance 63 Fifth Ave
Room: 300
Date Range: 1/25/2024 - 5/9/2024