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Organization, Regulations, and Courses 2022-23

ARTH 48.08 The Photographic Medium

The invention of the photograph radically changed the way we experience the world. The selfie and Instagram are but two of the most recent ways in which photographic technology has become ubiquitous in our everyday lives. This course traces the evolution of the photograph from pre-photographic forms, such as the diorama to its current digital apotheosis. We will focus on how the medium evolved in concert with changing social conditions that shaped, and were shaped in turn, by its evolution. A wide range of practices will be considered, from documentary photographs to fine art. Major figures in photo history will be discussed alongside developments in photographic technology and their impact on photographic imagery in both fine art and visual culture more broadly (advertising, science, journalism). Throughout we will explore photography as a ‘thick’ medium, one inextricably bound up with social and theoretical concerns. Students will exit having a broad knowledge of the historical benchmarks and aesthetic theories of photography, as well as the ability to describe and analyze images in light of photographic technique.

Degree Requirement Attributes

Dist:ART; WCult:W

The Timetable of Class Meetings contains the most up-to-date information about a course. It includes not only the meeting time and instructor, but also its official distributive and/or world culture designation. This information supersedes any information you may see elsewhere, to include what may appear in this ORC/Catalog or on a department/program website. Note that course attributes may change term to term therefore those in effect are those (only) during the term in which you enroll in the course.