Why Fashion in America
Working in the public sphere presents unique challenges to artists, curators, critics, and viewers. Questions to be addressed in this course include the following: What constitutes a public? In the public sphere, who decides what defines a work of art? Who pays for it? Who benefits from it? According to what criteria are costs and benefits measured? If a public artwork is said to have a social benefit, what is it? Does it aim for beautification, memorialization, or provocation? We will investigate public works of historical importance and will concentrate on the development of the idea of public art throughout the 20th century. This seminar course will be reading intensive and discussion driven, with a significant number of field trips to public art sites around the Bay Area. Final project will be a research paper and presentation on a major public artwork or strategy.