Course Essentials

Course Description

Internet Art & Culture is an immersive online experience that engages students in networked studio practice and collaborative study. The course focuses on the integration of social media and contemporary Internet practices into the studio experience, providing students with a critical understanding of the dissolving boundaries between contemporary media art, telecommunications, and global information culture. The course includes: readings by media critics, historians and scholars on the impact of the Internet on society and the individual; the critique of online artworks by contemporary artists; and critical writing focusing on a broad range of historical, theoretic, aesthetic, and technological topics pertaining to Internet art and culture. Each student is required to complete a series of micro-projects, as well as a final project, which employ the network as a medium for artistic creation.

Open Source Studio

As part of the Open Source Studio (OSS) project at ADM, Internet Art & Culture explores forms of remote learning through several weeks of live class sessions via web-conferencing, as well as individual student critiques with the instructor via Skype. Students also work extensively in a WordPress “multi-site” system developed specifically for the course, a virtual studio environment that integrates a broad range of Web tools for artistic production, collaborative research, and online writing.

Special Topic

The topic for this semester is “Internet Television.” How do we think about the medium of TV in the age of the Internet, how is it changing, what are the key technologies involved, and how do artists create broadcasted works made specifically for live streaming. Students will collaboratively produce their own Internet TV channel and each student will create a live, streaming program as a final project for an end of semester broadcast.

Learning Objectives

The objective of Open Source Studio: Internet Art & Culture is to develop critical and artistic skills for the interpretation and creation of networked media art. Through readings, lectures, multimedia projects, and the critique of online artworks, students are exposed to the aesthetic, historical, social, cultural, and technological issues inherent in our increasingly global media environment. Students also gain collaborative skills through study in an online learning environment that emphasizes shared, cross-disciplinary activity.

Learning Outcome

On successful completion of the course students will have a new understanding of the Internet as an artistic medium. They will also have new insight into the collaborative process through participation in the online learning experience, and how each student’s contribution can alter the dynamics of the learning and artistic experience. It is the premise of Internet Art & Culture that learning, exploring, discovering, and producing finds new creative agency in close interaction with other students in the course through the use of online tools. Students will have an understanding of how concepts of open source apply to artistic creation and academic study when structured in a shared, tele-communications environment that requires cooperation and transparency. Lastly, students will gain an in-depth understanding of the conceptual, aesthetic and technological skills required to create art that draws from communications media and comments on the broader global information culture.

Grading & Rubrics

Grading for class participation is broken down into the following:

  • Class Participation and Attendance – 10%
  • WordPress – 5%
  • Micro-projects – 15%
  • Research Critiques – 15%
  • Project Hyperessay – 25%
  • Final Project – 40%

Grades for the course are based on the following general criteria:

  • The commitment to engage the process of online production, research, and dialogue
  • Incorporate concepts and techniques drawn from the study of net based culture and art into student work
  • Complete work on time
  • Points are given for each assignment, such that students are responsible for the accumulation of the final score/grade (much like a game!)
  • Grades are allocated according to the standard NTU system of percentages

Grading will be assigned for all assignments & attendance:

  • Micro-projects: each 5 points (total 35 points)
  • Project hypressay: three installments (total 45 points)
  • Research critiques: each 5 points (total 35 points)
  • Final project: 100 points
  • Class attendance: 3 points per class (total 39 points)
  • Evaluation of WordPress site (total 15 points)

Attendance & Class participation:

Students participate through discussion and presentation during weekly 3-hour class sessions held onsite for weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 10, 11, 12, 13 and online via Adobe Connect for the remaining weeks 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. Students are required to attend class and/or login without being late, or else a point will be deducted. Students should plan to login in at 7:30 PM so the class can begin promptly at 7:40 PM. Students are also required to participate in class discussion and to present their work during critique. Students with more than 3 unexcused absences will automatically fail the course, which is a University policy.

Hardware & Software Requirements:

  • MacBook Pro (or laptop) with webcam & mic
  • Mobile device: iOS or Android
  • Access to Broadband connection
  • Headset or earbuds
  • Firefox browser

Required of the the Virtual Studio in WordPress:

  • Setting up the Site: accounts, profile
  • Creating a Post: editing, database, categories, tags
  • Media Integration: embedding media
  • Widgets: tag cloud, Flickr feed, etc.
  • Menu Customization: information architectures

Open Source Studio

Open Source Studio (OSS), a project founded and directed by Visiting Associate Professor Randall Packer of the School of Art, Design & Media at Nanyang Technological University, is a collaborative, online software environment designed to meet the needs and dynamics of studio-based teaching in the media arts. OSS has been developed as a prototypical multi-site WordPress content management system situated on the School’s network. The project also incorporates live forms of remote teaching, critique, guest lectures, and online events via Web-conferencing using Adobe Connect. Open Source Studio is thus a multi-faceted set of Web tools that integrates physical classroom/studio space with the online environment for critical writing, media documentation, portfolio presentation, online conferencing, asynchronous discussion, and social media.