GRAD 5500-001 (2535): Graduate Professional Practice Seminar Fall 2018 

Tuesdays 1:00–4:00 p.m.

Matt Morris

3 credits 

In this course, we will work together to examine and expand on the aspirations that characterize the professional life of an artist, while preparing for the practicalities that artists face upon leaving graduate school. We will map the realities of a globalized art world with particular interest in how artists locate positions for themselves within such vast and various systems. To do so, we will consider models cultivated in the careers of particular artists—engaging through reading and discussion, class visits, field trips, and regular conversations with artists, gallerists, curators, and art professionals. We’ll analyze ways to navigate resourcefully, hybridize professional roles, and develop productive habits in maintaining and advancing one’s art. We will account for the functions that biennials, art fairs, residencies, conferences, and post-graduate programs serve—how these art world interstices have evolved, the structural resources that support them, and the effects such spaces have on how artists’ careers are imagined and actuated. Relatedly, the relationships artists have to contemporary criticism, being scripted into art historical narratives, and operating strategically across discursive, commercial, and non-profit spaces will be unpacked extensively. Proper preparation for applications, as well as advice for navigating professional networks will be emphasized throughout all aspects of our investigations.The benefits and creative potential of teaching in various locations and times of one’s life will be a means of reflexively responding to the academic setting in which this course’s research is conducted.

Over the semester each artist in the class will be expected to initiate or improve upon a web platform for their work. We will look at a wide variety of web engagement models.

Participants in the seminar will be furnished with the critical tools to examine current art world issues that reflect on professional practices. Participants will be expected to define for themselves the meaning of success as a starting point to finding optimism in the work that will be done after grad school.

Matt Morris is an artist, writer, and sometimes curator based in Chicago. He presents artwork nationally and internationally including Shane Campbell Gallery, Queer Thoughts, and Gallery 400, Chicago; The Mary + Leigh Block Museum of Art, Evanston, Illinois; The Elmhurst Art Museum, Elmhurst, Illinois; Fjord and Vox Populi in Philadelphia; The Poor Farm in Manawa, Wisconsin; and The Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati. He contributes to Artforum.com, Art Papers, ARTnews, Flash Art, Newcity, and Sculpture; and his writing appears in numerous exhibition catalogues and artist monographs. He served on numerous committees awarding residencies, funding, and academic opportunities. He is a transplant from southern Louisiana who holds a BFA from the Art Academy of Cincinnati, and earned an MFA in Art Theory + Practice from Northwestern University, as well as a Certificate in Gender + Sexuality Studies. In Summer 2017, he earned a Certification in Fairyology from Doreen Virtue, PhD. Morris is a lecturer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

 ARTHI/MFA 5095: Museum Education Graduate Scholars Seminar and Practicum

Fall 2018 and Spring 2019

Thursdays from 2:00–8:00 p.m. and Fridays from 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.

Nenette Luarca-Shoaf3 credits

This two-semester long seminar and practicum in museum education—a collaboration between the museum and School of the Art Institute of Chicago and intended for both artists and arts professionals in-training—provides practical work experience and theoretical grounding in the multi-faceted practices of museum education. In a weekly seminar, students discuss readings relating to the history, theory, and practice of museums and museum education, and the cohort is able to share and reflect on their individual and collective experiences in the field. After considering the core resources of a museum educator (the space, collections, history, and audience of the institution), we explore the primary ways museum educators engage audiences (gallery teaching, community engagement, immersive and participatory experiences, and analog/digital modes of interpretation). Guest speakers and field trips supplement the rich resources that are the Art Institute collection and its staff. Halfway through the first semester, students do practicum work within the museum’s Department of Learning and Public Engagement to contribute towards its efforts developing, executing, and evaluating programs for a wide range of audiences. Each student will work with faculty to develop a culminating project that addresses current issues in the field of museum learning and engagement and is informed by practical and scholarly research.

Students are invited to enroll in the Museum Education Graduate Scholars Seminar and Practicum by application only. Museum Education Graduate Scholars each receive an award of $1,000 and the opportunity to request up to an additional $400 in research materials and professional development. Learn more about the process on the Grants and Opportunities page.Applications will open in Spring 2019.