Department of Design & Computation Arts
wed 8:30 – 12:30
Room: EV 7.745
Computer Lab: EV 5.635
In this theory course students analyze the impact of images through the study of popular culture and the persuasiveness of advertising in image-saturated and information-dense societies. Projects address strategies for effective visual communication as catalysts towards transformative socio-cultural environments.
By completing this course, students will:
This course blends theory and practice (praxis) through readings, lectures and presentations, critical discussion and reflexive reports, and the research–creation of two major graphic design projects. The major projects (The Images We Tell and the Visual Essay) are not medium specific, primarily self-directed and process-oriented.
In-class time is equally divided between presentations and discussions, and studio work and feedback.
Please see the DCART syllabus for further details.
Participation and Blog
MP 01: The Images We Tell
MP 02: Visual Essay
Sep. 6 — Course Introduction
Sep. 13 — Introduction to Semiotics
MP 01 assigned
Read: Mythologies, Roland Barthes: Myth is a type of speech, Myth as a semiological system, The form and the concept, and a selected essay of your choice.
Presentation: Introduction to Semiotics
Oct. 4 — Consumer Culture, Style and Commodification
Response 01 due
Watch: The Story of Stuff, Annie Leonard
Read: First Things First Manifesto (2000)
Read: Critical Engagement: Graphic Design Culpability and Responsibility, Kevin Yuen Kit Lo: Part 01
Oct. 11 — Major Project 01 Presentation and Critique
MP 01 due
Oct. 18 — Identity and Representation
MP 02 assigned
Read: In and Around: Cultures of Design and the Design of Cultures Part I, Andrew Blauvelt
Read: Fakes, Fetishes, and Furniture, Muhan Zhang (review of Karen Tam's Terra dos Chinês)
Read: Think Before You Appropriate, Simon Fraser University
Nov. 1 — Digital Visual Culture
Read: Overcoming Internet Disillusionment: On the Principles of Meme Design, Geert Lovink
Browse: rhizome.org, newhive.com
Nov. 15 — Project Studio / Process Critique
Response 03 due
Nov. 22 — Major Project 02 Presentation and Critique
MP 02 due
Nov. 29 — Course Debrief
*Dec. 6 — No Class Scheduled
Response 04 due
Students are required to maintain a class blog to post their process and documentation work as well as their reflexive responses. Sharing inspirations, ideas and resources amongst each other is encouraged.
– Mathilde Basin
– Carl Bergeron-Gagnon
– Thomas Breault
– Priscilla Carvalho
– Reem Chidiac
– Gabrielle Flood
– Guillemette Frappier
– Molly Gajdosik
– Jeanne Garneau-Levesque
– Stephanie Handfield
– Sophie Jemtrud
– Louis-Pierre Labranche
– Laurence Labrie
– Van Le
– Victor Le
– Jessica Leroux-Contreras
– Nina Mortada
– Jason Passalacqua
– Camille Poitevin
– Victoria Rizzolo
– Valeria Rosas-Rivera
– Bianka Sauve
– Laura Toma
– Katherine Valenzuela
We aim to create a safer space within the class environment in order for all students to participate equally, with a commitment to mutual respect and anti-oppression. Discrimination (and discriminatory language) based on gender identity, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, ability, and any other forms of intolerance will not be accepted. Marginalised voices will be prioritized if/when deemed necessary.
Students with specific needs or concerns are encouraged to speak with me privately at any point, as course material and structure can be accomodated as necessary.