A wide shot of a ceramics studio, featuring students working with pottery wheels and other tools.

Chicago Magazine Praises SAIC’s Successful Class About Failure

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s The Institute of Failure course was the recent subject of a piece by Chicago art critic, Jason Foumberg (MA 2006). Led by faculty member Matthew Goulish, “students are routinely encouraged to consider what it means to fail, but also how to ‘fail better,’ in the immortal words of playwright Samuel Beckett.” By stretching classroom protocol and experimenting with procedure, students learn to adapt their creativity to changing situations.

Foumberg also highlights how SAIC alums are reimagining this coursework in their own teaching practices. Alberto Aguilar (BFA 1997, MFA 2001), a tenured professor in Harold Washington College’s studio arts program, incorporates Goulish’s ideas into his classroom and tells Foumberg that these lessons in failure teach “how to be flexible with whatever comes your way, resourcefulness, play, pushing boundaries, and painting as a physical feat.” For more information, check out “Why Failure Is Being Taught in Art School” over at Chicago.