These are the Classes I’m Taking in My Final Semester of Graduate School

posted in: School 17
My alma mater: The Art Institute of Chicago, 2014. Photo by Nicholas Hartmann via Wikipedia.



It’s happening. I’ve got one semester left of graduate school before I become a master. Can you stand it??

Classes for spring term, my final term at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) start this Thursday. Exactly how I’m going to wedge school back into my ever-busy schedule is a puzzle, I won’t lie. But I will make it work. I must. I don’t have a choice if I want to be a master, which I do. I mean, I want to get this degree just so I can walk around in Total Mastery and just always know how to do everything and never make mistakes and live in this constant state of having arrived. That’s what I’ve been writing huge tuition checks for, isn’t it? That’s what happens when you get your master’s, right? Total Mastery with Perpetual Arrival?

While we’re waiting for that to happen, wanna know what classes I’m taking??

Sharing my schedule might not sound interesting to everyone, but I’ve personally always loved to hear what courses people select for their school experience. It’s like, “Woah, you got into Advanced Trigonometry for Mid-Oceanic Systems Design? That’s amazing!” or “Wow, they added a section of Shakespeare IV: Advanced Tragedy from 1-4 p.m. on Tuesdays?? I’m in the Elemental Architectural Practicum Seminar on Tuesdays … I wonder if I can switch …”

(No? Anyone? Just me?)

My spring term looks amazing — and zero trig. Aside from having the pleasure of weekly advising sessions with the mighty Jill Riddell and my personal hero (and friend), Jim McManus, I will be taking three delicious courses. Here they are, the beauts, with an excerpt from the SAIC course descriptions:

Writing: Systems of Writing Seminar
This course examines writing formulated and structured according to systems of thought and expression, derived from various disciplines and technologies including alphabets, calendars, palimpsests, experiments, collections, and translations. 

Art History: Continuing Histories in Fiber
This course locates current practice and discourse in fiber and material studies within a contemporary history of the field. Focusing primarily on the period from the 1950s onward, the first part of the course will emphasize important moments in the emergence of Fiber as a field of practice and theory during the 1960s and 1970s, through the presentation of seminal texts, exhibitions, and artist works. We will study the field as it formed in a relationship to related movements in art and politics, and in particular, to craft, minimalism and conceptual art, and feminism. 

Writing: ‘What It Wants’ (Workshop)
This workshop explores the notion that each piece of writing has its own needs. The writer’s role, then, is to get out of the way and let the piece emerge. As memoirist and poet Patricia Hampl notes, it’s a matter of paying attention to “what it wants, not what I want.” With this in mind, writers/artists … will have an opportunity to investigate not only the genesis of their work but also the choices made along the way to completion.

I’m so stoked.

I’m less stoked to apprehend the fact that this semester requires that I put my thesis together. I’m thinking of printing out the entirety of the ol’ PG and turning her in. This blog is basically a thesis, right? And SAIC is an art school. They might actually let me get away with that.

Maybe if I printed out all the thousands of entries and then all of you wrote something, too, I could put everything in a huge, inflatable binder and then we’d all be famous.

I am mostly kidding.