Assignment Art

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Co-editors of New York-based magazine Paper Monument, painter Roger White and Dushko Petrovich , talk about their new publication, Draw It with Your Eyes Closed: The Art of the Art Assignment, an anthology of art assignments from over 100 contributors.


Dushko Petrovich and Roger White

Comments [12]

Heywood from brooklyn

Well I have a class in conceptual art and the assignment was to do nothing; so thats what we did. It was totally life altering.

Mar. 14 2012 12:12 PM
Carole Peck Harrison from Manhattan, New York

My assignment was to create a means to assemble a paper mountain of memories that were found hidden in a big box atop my closet when I moved.
Results:The metaphor diven process I call Soul Bowls (sometimes called Story Bowls): The Spirit and Story of Memorabia™

Bits and pieces of collections are arranged and captured, preserving an emotionally charged, transformational experience. I work with the paper-mache process, an old but new way to tell a story.
One's paper history, momentos and other ephemera• are built layer by layer, colors and textures combined, resulting in a unique visual narrative of personal and meaningful experiences.

A great way to clean up, clean out, move on AND tell your story, Your Way

Mar. 14 2012 12:12 PM
Sophie from Poughkeepsie, NY

@John from Hackensack

Holy crap, that's crazy! I don't think I would have gone for that in a million years.

Mar. 14 2012 12:02 PM
elizabeth from nyc

with classical art study, so much of the beginning training is learning how to see things not for what they are literally. dont look at an eye as an eye, look at the light and shadow that make the shape. one great lesson i had early on, was to find the shadow shapes that make up a figure and see them as cartoon characters. it would become confusing, are you seeing cartoon characters, or a beautiful figure? the character of the cartoon shapes would be so strong, that in recreating them in the positive and negative space, youd end up with an extremely accurate drawing!

Mar. 14 2012 11:57 AM
John from Hackensack

I am a business major at Hackensack Community College, I took a figure drawing class to understand art. The teacher had a nude model and then made us all take off our clothes. I was nervous but got very excited. I think I made some great drawings, but I dont want to see my classmates anymore now that they have seen my winky.

Mar. 14 2012 11:57 AM
Emily Muschinske from Hopewell, NJ

My most memorable assignment and one I assign now as I teach art at Seton Hall University is to show students how to build an accordion book and then tell them to document a trip in that book. They are asked to go from point A to point Z and pick up artifacts, take photos, jot down notes as they move through space, through nature or through the neighborhood. The artifacts from the journey are then arranged in the book. The books are INCREDIBLE and helps students slow down and observe their surroundings and see trash, debris, or objects from nature and ordinary things as worthy cultural artifacts. The students love that the book becomes a record of their surroundings at that particular point in their lives.

The book that I made, as a student, documented a bike ride from Madison to Mount Horeb, Wisconsin and was a record of the thoughts I had while riding and the extreme windstorm I was up against during the journey.

Mar. 14 2012 11:57 AM
Tim Saternow from Art studio on 37 th Street

Wood Block Day
How to communicate emotions and feelings?

A big pile of wood blocks, different shapes, different sizes
Teams of 2 students, each given a word based on an emotional feeling.
Try to communicate to the rest of the group what your word is simply using wood blocks.
Limits: 2x2 area

I used workshop in my basic design class for theatre artists at the University of Connecticut.

Mar. 14 2012 11:56 AM
Jennie Schaeffer from Newton, nj

I attended Syracuse University for my bfa and took an experimental drawing course with visiting artist, Cara Tomlinson. She exposed us to the use of systems, inspired by the I Ching, allowing the system to determine the end result. I still refer to these drawings with my students; it was an eye opening experience to work in non-traditional ways.

Mar. 14 2012 11:56 AM
sean from brooklyn

At weekly painting crits I had a professor who would ask me.
"What did I tell you to do last week?"
I would tell him.
He would then say "Oh that's stupid do the opposite!"

Might have been lazy of him but was always fun.

Mar. 14 2012 11:54 AM
Lynn Cole

I teach Information Design a CityTech, and my favorite assignment is to have students document a single 24-hour period from their life, then represent it visually. I've gotten timelines, flow charts, and all manner of creative solutions. Fun stuff!

Mar. 14 2012 11:54 AM

Art is by nature a lonely and impossible slow activity.

After graduating from Pratt Institue, I can with almost full confidence say that no one should ever study art in art school. This is because art schools are giant corporations. To survive art school you need to know how to cheat/lie/reuse assignments. Because all professors think they are gods gift to art, they have no comprehension of how bureaucracies abuse students and demand results more than anything.

Mar. 14 2012 11:52 AM
Jared Buckhiester from Brooklyn, Greenpoint

I am a student at Bard's MFA program in my studio today. My fellow student and sculptor Lee Maida came to my studio 4 weeks ago and was talking with me about my work. She suggested I make something bigger than myself. It has been great.

the assignment

"make something bigger than yourself"

Mar. 14 2012 11:52 AM

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