Spring 2025 | Asia, Africa, and Europe Exploration

ART 320 Global Encounters in Art

Overview of Course

Art can both reflect and counter the social, environmental, and political frameworks in which it is created. This class will investigate contemporary art that has been used as a tool to transform cultural perspectives, alter political policies, and prompt social or environmental change within our port locations of Vietnam, Malaysia, India, Kenya, South Africa, Ghana, Morocco, and Spain.

Art often reflects personal and cultural worldviews. We will explore the role that activist artists have played in shaping culture through an investigation of contemporary artists whose methodologies, materials, and approaches challenge cultural norms. We will research, analyze, and unpack the works of contemporary social artists from our port destinations such as Dinh Q. Le from Vietnam, Daku from India, and Zanele Muholi from South Africa. These artists employ a range of media such as photography, mixed media, installation, and sculpture to confront issues such as consumerism, media representations, LGBTQ rights, and censorship. Students will analyze the conceptual perspectives of the artists in concert with their material choices and treatments to aid in their understanding of how concept and form can build meaning in a work of art. Students will have the opportunity to collaborate on the creation of public artworks with local contemporary artists in two of our port locations.