ART601 MFA Graduate Seminar in Studio Art: Studio Co-Requisite I, Kirsten Stromberg & Regan Wheat, Fall 2019 | SACI College of Art & Design Florence

ART601 MFA Graduate Seminar in Studio Art: Studio Co-Requisite I, Kirsten Stromberg & Regan Wheat, Fall 2019


This seminar formulates the first year of a two-year program in the MFA in Studio Arts, focusing on the development of artistic research and studio practice. Students will be encouraged to think about their work within the context of contemporary art production, broadening their awareness of cultural, political, aesthetic, formal and technical issues in art as well as to current discourses across philosophical and historical fields of study. Concentrations in the seminar will be on: ideation - the formulation of concepts and ideas; exploration – experimentation and the rethinking of creative practices; contextualization – the artwork in relation to contemporary art discourses; and generation - the realization of the artwork and how it moves in the world.


The seminar consists of lectures, discussion, readings, studio work, individual and group critiques. Throughout the year, topics will be presented that are relevant to contemporary art and related to the work in process. Pertinent readings and discussions will occur in tandem. When relevant, guest speakers and artists will be invited to reflect on and discuss the students’ work and topics covered.

Fall 2019

Students will be attending:

Learning Outcomes

Each student is required to produce a body of work, make presentations on his/her work, and participate in the end-of-year group exhibition.

Means of Evaluation

10% Written articulations, including artist statement

30% Participation in weekly meetings, readings & discussions

60% Individual and Group Critiques – presentation, articulation, discussion and quality of work

Grades range from A+ to F. The SACI grading scale follows:
A+ Outstanding
A Excellent
A- Nearly Excellent
B+ Very Good
B Good
B- Nearly Good
C+ Above Satisfactory
C Satisfactory
C- Below Satisfactory
D Unsatisfactory
F Failure

A: Outstanding. Work is done with the highest commitment to excellence with a refined understanding and research of technical skill in chosen medium. Participation is consistent, all classes are attended. Open studio work is completed on time and goes consistently above and beyond what is required.

B: Above Average. Work is strong and shows a good understanding of technical skill in chosen medium. Participation may be inconsistent, but still good. Open studio work usually shows an understanding of what is covered.

C: Satisfactory. Work is average. Participation may be inconsistent. Open studio work is completed with average dedication and understanding.

Attendance and Punctuality

Punctual class attendance is mandatory and all students are expected to take an active role in protecting a serene learning environment.

  • You are expected to stay for the duration of the class and to leave only during official breaks unless you explain in advance a medical necessity to the professor. Frequent missed time in class may be counted as an unexcused absence.
  • If you are unable to attend class, you must inform your professor in advance.
  • An absence is excused for documented and serious medical problems. An undocumented medical absence is at the discretion of the professors.
  • Each absence will lower the participation grade by 1/3 of a grade. (i.e. an A will become an A-, and A- a B+ etc.)
  • If you must miss class for reasons other than a medical emergency, you should discuss with the professors the consequences of the absences. It is ultimately the professors’ decision to assess how your absence may affect your academic performance. In exceptional circumstances (which do not include personal travel) the professors may decide to excuse the absence and provide you with alternative work to make up for missed classes, site visits or field trips if applicable.

The Learning Environment

The MFA studios are group spaces and require that everyone respect the space of others. Being aware of your impact and actions is fundamental. Please keep it at all times clean and return all materials/supplies to their appropriate spaces.

All members of the class are expected to respect the learning environment and the professors’ efforts to maintain it. All phones, laptops and other electronic devices are only allowed to be seen or used during class or specific tasks with the approval of the professor.

Course Outline

Week 1

Friday, September 13
Introduction to Course

Presentation of Individual Work

Week 2

Friday, September 20
– the formulation of concepts and ideas
Slides | In-studio work | Individual Meetings | Research in relation to artistic research.

Weeks 3-4

Friday, September 27 and Friday, October 4
- experimentation and how ideas manifest in relation to contemporary art practices
Slides | In-studio work | Individual Meetings | Discussion

Week 5

Friday, October 11
- technical and formal issues in relation to artistic research
Slides | In-studio work | Individual Meetings | Discussion

Week 6

Friday, October 18

Week 7

Friday, October 25

Week 8

MIDTERM BREAK for undergraduates (October 26 - November 3)

Week 9


Friday, November 8
- in relation to contemporary art discourses
Slides | In-studio work | Individual Meetings | Discussion

Weeks 10-13

Fridays, November 15, 22, 29 and December 6
- the realization of a body of work
Slides I On-site research I In-studio work | Individual Meetings | Discussion


Week 14

Friday, December 13
Prepare for Final Review

In-studio work | Individual Meetings | Discussion

Week 15

Friday, December 20

The professors reserve the right to change the syllabus when necessary and will inform the students if and when this occurs.

General Safety & Emergency Instructions

Click here for a pdf of SACI's General Safety & Emergency Instructions.

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