The Perry and Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts advances innovative directions for research, teaching, and production across the boundaries of individual arts disciplines and among artists, scientists, and scholars.


To see a list of past courses, please visit the Course Archive

Spring 2015

Acting Outside the Box (Kym Moore,Theater Arts and Performance Studies)
Examines the relationship between social and cultural identities and their representations in dramatic literature and performance. Students will be expected to read critical essays and plays, conduct research, and prepare to act in scenes that challenge the actor to confront the specifics of character and situation beyond the Eurocentric ideal. The goal is to strengthen the actor's ability to construct truly meaningful characters by removing any reliance of "type" and/or immediate "identification" with the characters they will portray. 

Art of Film (Hisham Bizri,Literary Arts)
This is a course in the art of film writing, directing, editing picture and sound, and producing, be it narrative or avant-garde. Students will engage the theory and practice of the art of filmmaking via readings, viewings, writings, and making their own films. Each student will complete four films from initial conception to the final film in a collaborative environment.

Artists and Scientists as Partners (Julie Strandberg, Theater Arts and Performance Studies)
This course is the result of a research project and will include reviewing research on the arts and neurological disorders and reviewing scientific research on Parkinson's Disease and Autism. Course work will also include field trips, guest lectures, workshops, practicums, and final projects.

CAVE Writing (John Cayley, Literary Arts)
An advanced experimental workshop for writing in immersive 3D - at the cutting edge of new media - introducing text, sound, spatial poetics, and narrative movement into Brown's "Cave" at its Center for Computation and Visualization. An easy-to-learn and easy-to-use application allows non-programmers to create projects on their laptops and then to run them in the Cave without the necessity for specialist support. Broadly interdisciplinary, the course encourages collaboration between students with different skills in different media, who work together to discover a literary aesthetic in artificially rendered space.

Designing and Playing Alternate Controllers (Butch Rovan, Music)
This seminar will explore the science and aesthetics of designing alternate controllers for musical performance. Topics will include basic electronics and hardware prototyping, instrument construction, theories of gesture, human-computer interface issues, and the challenges of mapping sensor data to meaningful musical parameters

Digital Media (Wendy Chun, Modern Culture and Media)
This course introduces students to the crtiical study of digital media: from surveillance to hactivism, from cyberpunk fiction/films to art installations, from social media to video games. We will analyze the aesthetics, politics, protocols, history and theory of digital media. Special attention will be paid to its impact on/relation to social/cultural formations, especially in terms of new media’s “wonderful creepiness,” that is, how it compromises the boundaries between the public and private, revolutionary and conventional, work and leisure, hype and reality. 

Embodying the Book (Cole Swensen, Literary Arts)
What are the limits of the book? How far can it go? Alternatively, what is its essence? What is absolutely essential to it? This collaborative class considers these questions and creates inventive book structures. Texts will address topics including the ethics of cooperation and group dynamics, as well as the history and nature of the book as a cultural tool and force.

Guhahamuka (Erik Ehn, Theater Arts and Performance Studies)
Guhahamuka is a Kinyarwanda word meaning “breathlessness,” sometimes applied to the wordlessness that befalls the survivors of trauma. We will progress through a series of graduated exercises design to work-out the fundamentals of writing for the live encounter, with an emphasis on the uses of testimony, and language that pushes into spaces where language doesn’t fit, doesn’t belong, fails, converts itself to different energies. How a writer’s technique images spiritual practice, and avails of the useful impossibilities of incarnation and transcendence. Taking on a practical language from contemplative traditions as means of ordering the writer’s craft. 

Narrative and Immersion (Todd Winkler, Music; Leslie Thornton,Modern Culture and Media)
Narrative and Immersion is a production course examining the potentials for cinematic media installations. The course draws on techniques of narrative to establish engagement in immersive environments. Students will be introduced to cinematic concepts, interactive technologies, multi-channel video and surround sound environments.

Photo Lab: Visual Performance of Rights (Ariella Azoulay, Modern Culture and Media)
An abundance of “images of atrocity” show daily human rights violations around the globe. The course examines the formation of this visual rhetoric of Human Rights from the end of WWII to the proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and its ratification. Following the quick dissemination of this visual rhetoric we shall question the monopoly it has gained and maintained ever since. Studying photography as an event and a set of relations, we shall explore other possible uses of photography to encode, show and struggle against human rights violations, and to imagine a visual declaration of human rights. 

Recording Studio as Compositional Tool (Jim Moses, Music)
A study of advanced studio techniques taught in parallel with topics in psychoacoustics. Students will create original studio work while developing listening and technical skills for audio production. Technical topics include recording, signal processing and mixing software, microphone technique, and live sound engineering.

Systems for Play (Peter Bussigel, Granoff Center Artist-in-Residence, Music)
Complex patterns emerge while playing with simple processes. This course focuses on systems as creative constraints and sites for composing sound and other materials. Amplifying, multiplying, delaying, cutting, folding, growing and randomizing become lenses for animating our practices and playgrounds for exploring tendencies (our own, the materials', the systems').

Time Deformations (Ed Osborn, Visual Art)
This studio course explores modes of electronic media by focusing on time as a primary material. Students will develop projects for specific sites and situations in response to assigned topics individually and in groups. Selected works in video, sound, performance, and online media that make innovative use of temporal strategies will be examined.

Visual Poetry (Francesca Capone, Literary Arts)
This interdisciplinary workshop explores the visual possibilities of language. Considering the page as a starting point, we'll create new works between writing and visual art. Through researching early writing systems, concrete poetry, asemic writing and contemporary works, students will gain a deeper understanding of their own practices. We'll examine the works of Dieter Roth, Carl Andre, Sol Lewitt, Aram Saroyan, Kenneth Goldsmith, Rosmarie Waldrop and more.