Week 9

November 5-8 “Appropriation Workshop”


  • Enact a critical outlook as visual readers, recognizing how meaning is cultivated and perpetuated through representation.
  • Produce ethical, informed, multi-dimensional, work that is situated in contemporary concerns.
  • Identify the characteristics of medium towards the interpretation of an image, in order to make informed material choices for their own work.


Continuation of appropriation artworks.


Debate Map (50 minutes)

  • Please have them continue from the first appropriation in-lecture activity, continuing the debate of Sherrie Levine’s piece.  You will have a series of responses on index cards provided for your class, (these will be passed on from teacher to teacher as there is only one set!) there will be some empty index cards for students who wish to add more responses to the debate of Sherrie Levine’s Art vs. Theft.  Leave the students’ additions in the pack for the next class, and let us see where this goes!
  • Have students arrange a “debate map” with the different answers either on the white board (with magnets) or flat on tables lined at the side of the room.  Have them order the various answers in a way that makes the divide between “Art” and “Theft” (and everything in-between or even both sides!) towards the creation of a skeleton of reasoning.  If they wish to add in more labels, such as “both” or “neither” or anything else, have them do it!
  • On blank index cards, have them fill in areas or add points that would complete the map that seem to be missing, if they haven’t already done so.
  • By the end, go over some of the answers which ultimately give evidence of our values and how they reside in art-making. You may want to ask them to place themselves on an area on the map, or to pick up a card that most represents how they feel about the work.
  • In particular, in our contemporary day is skill the main indicator of an a work of art work or artist?  Does an artist sometimes have to take a wrong step (stealing) in the right direction (questioning authorship and expertise/authority) in order to bring out larger issues?  How does a retelling or appropriation use the initial agency of the work in its new meaning?  (This question is vital as for the most part the appropriation projects become music video’s or trailers and lack any uncovering of how the initial footage projected particular ideologies, and how appropriation can expose these and break them down, rather than perpetuate them).  You may also want to question if the theft makes them angry, could that affect not be considered art?  If they show that they prefer the answer “there was no point” question if there really wasn’t any idea or if they just didn’t like the idea, or if they are somewhat focused on originality you can question if the gesture of re-authoring the work was not original? etc…

For further information on a debate map, please see Derek Bruff’s Agile Learning Blog

Take a break

Appropriation Works

Please bring students through the “Appropriation” works from the lecture.  You may also wish to show them work that I will not show in lecture, to expand on the examples.  References provided below.  Please feel free to add more suggestions in the post reply box!

Example Video Works:

GIF Works:

  • Niko Princen Nguyen Ngoc Loans From the project Starry Nights
    Niko Princen Dollies From the project Starry Nights
    Niko Princen Moon From the project Starry Nights
    Niko Princen Steve Jobs From the project Starry Nights
  • Sebastian Schmieg Search by Image, Recursively, Transparent PNG, #1 2011
    Sebastian Schmieg Search by Image, Recursively, Starting with Photo of Myself 2011
    Sebastian Schmieg Search by Image, Once Upon a Time 2011
  • Jasper Ellings Animated Gifs (Appropriates program presets)
  • Lorna Mills  Party Manners  2014

Homework Reminders

  • All Modules are due November 15.
  • Appendix Video “Chronology” is a recommendation, there are no quiz questions as it is optional
  • Final Projects need to be uploaded to ComPAIR by November 15, Peer Critiques go to November 22

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