syllabus

SECTION GOALS

In addition to class discussions, group meetings, field trips, and artist presentations, the electronics/kinetics section will introduce the components and processes of creating electronic sculpture. Conventional building materials of sculpture will be integrated with electronic components, allowing students to activate their artwork in response to digital or physical inputs. We will discuss basic electricity and how it can be safely used in artwork. The projects will incorporate electronic materials such as motors, lights, microcontrollers, transistors and other electronic components along side conventional building materials.

Students are expected to experiment with and discover all the materials presented in class. A series of small assignments will lead students through a process of exploration and discovery, with the goal of discovering motion, gesture, or behavior through techniques of electronics and kinetics. Assignments will be posted to Canvas, and readings and additional resources will be made available through the class website.

Weeks 1 – 8 Exploring Motion/ Gesture/ Behavior

Learning in the environment of the Kinetics/Electronics facility students will be introduced to the different functions and essentials of a fabrication shop. Workshops on electronics and basic mechanical fabrication will introduce students to the necessary techniques for developing a prototype of motion or behavior, and short exercises and mini critiques will allow students the chance to explroe several iterations of motion. Each student will develop a prototype that incorporates one or more of the basic design examples discussed in class and communicates a developed idea of gesture or behavior. In this project student will work individually, learning the fundamental elements needed to incorporate motion and light into sculpture. These prototypes will be discussed in group critique.

Weeks 9-14 – Final Project / Integrating Systems

The second half of the semester students will work in pairs to build a project that performs to the script of a program, integrating the components and techniques students developed earlier in the semester. Your group will develop this project with both instructors. Students will be able to experiment with programming as a means of sequencing and controlling their artwork. You will be shown how to use the Arduino microcontroller to interact with physical objects and input & output serial information to Processing. Programming of the artwork will be made possible through use of the Processing Environment and the Arduino Environment. We will critique all these projects the final day of class.

MATERIALS

Students are expected to obtain their own materials for this course. We will discuss how to obtain different materials and students will be given a list of parts suppliers. The ability to search for and obtain proper materials is essential to building kinetic sculpture. The Electronics / Kinetics Shop can provide fasteners, simple electronic components. However, Motors and more expensive components are for demonstration only. There are old devices and machinery that can be harvested for parts located on the shelves in the classroom. SAIC resale has a number of useful electronic components and tools available either through the vending machines on the 8th floor or at the 8th floor resale desk.

All students must purchase an Arduino Kit from the 8th floor resale, approx. $ 40.00.

Students must bring their laptops to class each day.

REQUIREMENTS

  • Successful completion of all assignments on time
  • Midterm protyope presentation
  • 10-15 minute artist presentation
  • Readings throughout the semester
  • Participation in critiques and discussions
  • Final project

READINGS & ASSIGNMENTS

The class assignments and readings will be posted to canvas. Please check regularly to check for changes and upcoming assignments.

The readings for this course will be either delivered in class or found online. Some readings will support the technical component of the course, while other readings will be used as the basis of class discussion regarding critical issues of digital art and culture. Additional suggested readings can be found on canvas.

FIELD TRIPS

A field trip is scheduled for Sunday, October 26. We will not meet on Monday October 20.  Attendance is mandatory, and details will be discussed in class leading up to the trip. Please let me know if you anticipate any schedule conflicts. Other in class field trips will be scheduled during class hours. An optional, extracurricular field trip is scheduled for Sunday, October 19. Please listen for details in class.

COURSE POLICIES

ATTENDANCE

Students are best served by attending all classes. 

If a student misses MORE than three classes, whether or not for a reasonable cause, s/he will fail the class, if s/he does not withdraw from the class prior to the deadline for withdrawal with a grade of “W.” Deadline for withdrawal: October 28, 2014. If a student attends FEWER than three classes his/her financial aid, merit scholarship, academic standing, and/or immigration status will be compromised, regardless of an individual faculty member’s modifications of these recommendations.

Reasonable cause to miss a class might include:

  • Illness or hospitalization (the student should contact Health Services, who will relay information to the faculty in whose class the student is enrolled. To contact Health Services, call 312.499.4288.  Regular Health Services hours are 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.)
  • Observation of a religious holiday
  • Family illness or death

Attendance at Midterm and Final Critiques are mandatory. The Midterm Critique is on October 10, the Final Critique is on December 12. Speak with the instructor if you have any questions or concerns about attendance.

PLAGARISM

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago prohibits “dishonesty such as cheating, plagiarism, or knowingly furnishing false information to the School” (Students’ Rights and Responsibilities, Student Handbook). Plagiarism is a form of intellectual theft. One plagiarizes when one presents another’s work as one’s own, even if one does not intend to.

The penalty for plagiarizing may also result in some loss of some types of financial aid (for example, a No Credit in a course can lead to a loss of the Presidential Scholarship), and repeat offenses can lead to expulsion from the School. To find out more about plagiarism and how to avoid it, please visit http://www.saic.edu/media/saic/pdfs/campusresources/academicadvising/plagiarism_quickGuide.pdf.

The procedures for academic misconduct/plagiarism are described in the 2014–2015 Student Handbook. In summary, if a student is suspected of academic misconduct/plagiarism the faculty member should:

  • Review the allegation and discuss it with the student.
  • Assign a grade for the project/paper/class as appropriate and inform the student of this in writing.
  • Refer the student to the Student Handbook for detailed information about their rights and responsibilities.
  • Inform the Department Chair and the Assistant Dean of Student Affairs for Academic Advising in writing (Paul C Jackson,pjacks2@artic.edu).

Accommodations For Students with Disabilities Statement

SAIC is committed to full compliance with all laws regarding equal opportunities for students with disabilities. Students with known or suspected disabilities, such as a Reading/Writing Disorder, ADD/ADHD, and/or a mental health or chronic physical condition who think they would benefit from assistance or accommodations should first contact the Disability and Learning Resource Center (DLRC) by phone at 312.499.4278 or email at www.dlrc.saic.edu. DLRC staff will review your disability documentation and work with you to determine reasonable accommodations. They will then provide you with a letter outlining the approved accommodations for you to deliver to all of your instructors. This letter must be presented before any accommodations will be implemented. You should contact the DLRC as early in the semester as possible. The DLRC is located on the 13th floor of 116 S. Michigan Ave.

ACCOMODATIONS

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities
SAIC is committed to full compliance with all laws regarding equal opportunities for students with disabilities.  Students with known or suspecteddisabilities, such as a Reading/Writing Disorder, ADD/ADHD, and/or a mental health or chronic physical condition who think they would benefit from assistance or accommodations should first contact the Disability and Learning Resource Center (DLRC) by phone at 312.499.4278 or email atdlrc@saic.edu.  More information is available here.

DLRC staff will review your disability documentation and work with you to determine reasonable accommodations. They will then provide you with a letter outlining the approved accommodations for you to deliver to all of your instructors. This letter must be presented before any accommodations will be implemented.  You should contact the DLRC as early in the semester as possible. The DLRC is located on the 13th floor of 116 S Michigan Ave. Regular DLRC hours are Monday–Friday, 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Important Dates

8.27 // Fall 2013 classes begin

9.1 // Labor Day, no classes

9.9 // Fall Semester Add/Drop ends

10.13 // No Class – Meet Sunday, 10.19 instead

10.19 // Balloon Mapping Field Trip

10.28 // Last day to withdraw from a Fall class

11.17 // Winter Interim 2014 open registration begins, Spring 2014 advance registration for students with disabilities and RA’s

11.19 – 21 // Spring 2014 advance registration for undergraduates

11.26 – 11.30 // Thanksgiving Break, no classes

12.15 // Last Day of Fall 2013 classes

PLEASE NOTE:  Our last class meets on MONDAY, DECEMBER 15. Please do not make travel arrangements prior to this date. Successful completion of this course requires that you are present and participate in final critiques during the final class period.

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