Prof. Lauren Kroiz, Terra Visiting Professor 2017/18

Teaching American Art and Diaspora

Teaching American Art and Diaspora

The Terra Visting Professor at the John-F.-Kennedy Institute, Lauren Kroiz (UC Berkeley), offers the following courses on American Art in the summer semester 2018:

History of American Art: 1607 to the Present
(BA course number: 32101; Wednesdays 10 a.m. – noon, Kennedy Institute (Lansstr. 7-9, 14195 Berlin) room 319; first session on April 18, 2018)

This course will examine the history of American Art from the period of earliest European settlement through the present. Works of art and other forms of material culture will be explored and discussed within the context of philosophical, historical, social, and cultural developments. In this course, works of art and artifacts are interpreted not as formal objects isolated from history nor as passive objects that "reflect" the past, but rather as active agents that have the potential to influence and shape broader historical, social, and cultural patterns. Attention will also be given to the writings of artists and critics, as well as canonical texts in the formulation of the discipline by art historians, historians, and other scholars which illustrate the variety of methodologies and interpretations brought to bear on American art, architecture, and material culture.

Please register at: culture@jfki.fu-berlin.de with your name, matriculation number, study program, home university, zedat email address or email address of home university, and type of exchange program (if applicable). Deadline for registration is April 15, 2018. Enrollment for the course is capped at 40 students. A final list of participants will be published on April 18.

American Art and Diaspora 
(MA course number: 32114; Wednesdays 2 – 4 p.m., Kennedy Institute (Lansstr. 7-9, 14195 Berlin) room 319; first session on April 18, 2018)

This seminar will introduce students to theories of diaspora, using them as a lens through which to examine the relationships of American art’s audiences, authors, and objects. We will consider diaspora broadly as heterogeneous movements that scatter individuals and populations. Our course will work comparatively to consider multiple groups within the context of the United States, drawing especially on theorizations developed in African diaspora studies and Jewish studies. In so doing we will be attentive to the varied forms of voluntary and involuntary migration as they occur within transnational networks of power. Case studies on creative expression will include exile, self-determination, cooperation, trauma, display and narrative.  Introducing “otherness” and “difference” as key terms, our emphasis on diaspora will trouble the idea of a singular American art.

Please register at: culture@jfki.fu-berlin.de with your name, matriculation number, study program, home university, zedat email address or email address of home university, and type of exchange program (if applicable). Deadline for registration is April 15, 2018. Enrollment for the course is capped at 40 students. A final list of participants will be published on April 18.

In the winter semester 2017/18 she has offered the following courses on American Art:

Race and Representation in the United States since 1890 (Wednesdays 10 a.m. - noon, room 319, first session on November 1; 32101, BA Vertiefungsseminar Kultur A oder B)

This class focuses on theories and visualizations of race in the United States during the twentieth century. Class sessions will be organized around chronological case studies of diverse subjects made in varied media, including Thomas Dewing’s tonalist paintings, baby albums, the art of the Harlem Renaissance, photographs of WWII Japanese American internment, civil rights movement posters, and conceptual art by the collective ASCO. Drawing on critical theories of race and representation, in this course we will interrogate complex and sometimes vexing notions of race, ethnicity, visuality, visibility, authorship, identity and display in historical context.

U.S. Modernism and the Culture of Things (Wednesdays from 2 - 4 p.m., room 319,  first session on November 1; 32112, MA Modul B Kultur HS und interdisziplinäres Seminar 1 oder 2)

This seminar will introduce students to the burgeoning interdisciplinary field of “thing” theory to examine the relationships of objects, subjects and things. We will consider the materiality and agency of inanimate objects themselves, as well as the role of objects in establishing and mediating social relationships. In addition to our theoretical focus on things, we will also situate U.S. modernism historically as a phenomenon formulated within a culture of proliferating consumer goods. We will draw on methodologies from art history and material culture studies, as well as literature studies, anthropology, and political science. We will also examine primary source materials from the turn of the nineteenth to the twentieth century.


Conferences:

Empathy, Intimacy, and Ethics in American Art on June 5/6 2018.

Lectures:

"Leaving the Body: The Empty Spaces of American Modernism"; presented during the JFKI Lecture Series / Ringvorlesung: Capitalism and the North American City at the Freie Universität Berlin on January 10, 2018 and at the Ashmolean: Museum of Art and Archaeology at the University of Oxford on April 12, 2018. “Artist vs. Art Historian: Grant Wood, H.W. Janson, and the ‘Case of the Naked Chicken‘” Perspectives on American Literature and Culture: Summer Research Colloquium of the JFKI Literature and Culture Departments (May 2, 2018.) “Anne Brigman, Camera Work, and California” during the symposium Camera Work: History and Global Reach of an International Art Magazine, at the University of Zürich on March 10, 2018.

Research Trips:

In early April of 2018, as part of her ongoing research on the artist Shinkichi Tajiri, Professsor Kroiz travelled to the town of Baarlo in the southern Netherlands to visit the Shinkichi Tajiri Estate at the historical Castle Scheres.