Animation: Methods of Motion +

This course explores the fundamentals of storytelling through animation and takes students from traditional animation techniques to contemporary forms. In the first part of the course, students will focus on traditional animation, from script to storyboard through stop-motion and character-based animation. The course then examines effective communication and storytelling through various animation and motion design techniques. Drawing skills are not necessary for this course, however, students will keep a personal sketchbook.

Big Ideas in the History and Future of Technology +

Big Ideas: The History and Future of Technology
This class will provide students with a critical perspective on contemporary issues in media technologies and discuss the history, controversies, consequences, and ethical questions in emerging media. The first half of the class charts a history of media technologies from the 1940s to the present, focusing on the idealogical and social conditions that led to the creation of the technologies that exist now. The second half examines possible futures, and the tools we can use to predict (and build) those futures.

Instructor Website: http://alden.website

Capstone +

Allison ParrishIMNY-UT.400 | Last updated: October 20, 2023

The Capstone Studio course asks students to produce an interactive project (with documentation), a research paper, and a personal portfolio.

The interactive project will illustrate students’ unique interests as well as evidence of competency within the field of interactive media production. Students are encouraged to develop their project around a theme previously explored in their work. Projects will be presented and critiqued repeatedly throughout the capstone process to peers, faculty, and industry professionals. A final presentation of the interactive project will be delivered late in the semester.

The research paper (4000-5000 words) will focus on at least one aspect of the interactive project: e.g. culture, theory, philosophy, or history, the project context, and/or production methods. For example, students may write about their project’s reception by a set of specific users, or by users who are part of a larger culture, society, or market. It is important that students think beyond the project itself and situate it in a broader context accessible through research. The research paper will include an annotated bibliography of the books and other resources they used for their research.

Students will also be guided in the production of an online portfolio to showcase their work and accomplishments to the outside world. Graduates will be evaluated by their portfolio when applying for jobs, graduate school, artist residencies, grants, and the like. Portfolios will be tailored to the demands of each student’s future goals and target audience.

Prerequisites: Only available to graduating students!

Chatbots for Art’s Sake +

This class aims to repurpose existing chatbot technologies and use them for the sake of art. The class is twofold, students will engage in labs and workshops to learn and practice different techniques— such as p5.js, p5.speech, RiveScript, RiTa, and Alexa Skills—to create functional chatbots. They will also participate in lectures and discussions that look at the different roles Artificial Intelligence plays in human society, including but not limited to authority, companions, or simply reflections of the humans it interacts with.

Communications Lab +

Rosalie YuSyllabus | IMNY-UT.102 | Last updated: October 20, 2023

No prerequisites.

An introductory course designed to provide students with hands-on experience using various technologies including time based media, video production, digital imaging, audio, video and animation. The forms and uses of new communications technologies are explored in a laboratory context of experimentation and discussion. The technologies are examined as tools that can be employed in a variety of situations and experiences. Principles of interpersonal communications, media theory, and human factors are introduced. Weekly assignments, team and independent projects, and project reports are required

Creative Computing +

Dan O'SullivanSyllabus | IMNY-UT.101 | Last updated: October 20, 2023

This course combines two powerful areas of technology, Physical Computing and Programming, and asks students to consider their implications.  It will enable you to leap from being just a user of technology to becoming a mindful creator with it.

The course begins with Physical Computing, which allows you to break free from both the limitations of mouse, keyboard and monitor interfaces and stationary locations at home or the office. We begin by exploring the expressive capabilities of the human body and how we experience our physical environment. The platform for the class is a microcontroller (Arduino brand), a very small inexpensive single-chip computer that can be embedded anywhere and sense and make things happen in the physical world. The core technical concepts include digital, analog and serial input and output.

The second portion of the course focuses on fundamentals of computer programming (variables, conditionals, iteration, functions & objects) as well as more advanced techniques such as data parsing, image processing, networking, and machine learning. The Javascript ‘p5’ programming environment is the primary vehicle. P5 is more oriented towards visual displays on desktops, laptops, tablets or smartphones but can also connect back to the physical sensor & actuators from the first part of the class.

What can computation add to human communication? The ultimate question of this class is not “how” to program but “why” to program. You will gain a deeper understanding of the possibilities of computation in order to see how it applies to your interests (e.g. art, design, humanities, sciences, engineering). In addition to weekly technical assignments there are blogging assignments, usually reacting to short readings, allowing you to reflect in writing about the nature of computation and how it fits into your life and into human society. 

There is an even workload each week of a technical production assignment and a writing assignment but none of them are big.  The course is designed for computer programming novices but the project-centered pedagogy will allow more experienced programmers the opportunity to go further with their project ideas and collaborate with other students.

Critical Experiences +

​​Critical Experience is an experiential journey through a research driven art practice rooted in care, community, and somatic inquiry. This class is based on the premise that there are many ways to know things and we can draw upon these ways of knowing and our desire to know in order to nurture a creative practice grounded in research, clear intention, and a critical lens. Critical here means: discerning, eager to participate differently, cast new light on, re-examine, course-correct.

You will be guided through traditional research methods (library and interview techniques, citations, informal ethnographies) and experience design while also being asked to cultivate intentional awareness of your own positionalities, communities, personal strengths, emotions, and desires through experimentation, hunch following, rituals, and contemplative practices.This class was created for or artists/designers who are interested in participation/interaction and its relationship to social practice, critical design, and change-making as well as individuals curious about knowing what moves them.

Why experience? The work in this class will be looked at through the lens of its ability to transform (a user, participant, audience, viewer). Interactivity is one way of doing that, but through the lens of experience design, all art is temporal and embodied.

Designing Interfaces for Live Performance +

This course is designed to provide students with hands-on experience working with sensors and other electronics to design interfaces for a live, on stage, audio and visual performance at the end of the semester. Using Arduino, Ableton Live, and TouchDesigner, students will explore the expressive properties of physical hardware, sound, and live visuals. The forms and uses of physical computing, audio, computational media, and its application are explored weekly in both a hands on laboratory context, as well as weekly discussions of readings and existing performances.

Prerequisites: Creative Computing, Communications Lab: Hypercinema

Experimental Photography +

What are all the ways that you saw or made a photograph this week? How are those ways similar and different? How do those pictures function in your life and in society? What is a photograph? This course repeatedly asks these questions by using emerging computational tools to design alternative forms of making and interacting with photographs. The forms and applications of these tools, such as those for creative coding, physical computing, and machine learning, are explored weekly in technical tutorials and hands-on workshops. These are informed by discussions of critical debates in photography and various practitioners working with photographs, past and present. The homework includes readings, short writing responses, and photography assignments. Prerequisites: Comm Lab: HyperCinema (or similar coursework exploring communication and storytelling with digital tools) and New York’s IMA Creative Computing (or similar coursework with creative coding using the p5.js JavaScript library and programming for physical computing using Arduino microcontrollers). Note that prior experience with physical computing using the Arduino platform is required for this course. Please feel free to contact the instructor if you have any questions about the course.

Fluid Bodies +

Digital Bodies is an intermediate 3D imaging studio course that examines and explores the current technological applications and conceptual implications of post-photographic digital human simulations. We will regularly study the work that deals with digital bodies by contemporary artists and photographers such as LaTurbo Avedon, Chen Man, Quentin Deronzier, Hyphen-lab, Hayoun Kwon, and Gregory Bennett, and many digital art platforms in various categories, such as artificial human imaging, digital fashion models, and deepfake. We will be discussing the various theories relating to the idea of cyborgs and post-human conditions. Students will be learning 3D imaging skills for building, scanning, appropriating, and customizing prefabricated body models from multiple resources, exploring their movements that both imitate and go beyond the limits of reality and expanding conceptual themes. Besides the technical exercises, students are encouraged to create semester-long self-directed research and a final project using the imaging technology they’ve learned. Artist visits, field trips, and exhibition visits will also be arranged online or according to the public health safety situation. The exhibition of the student’s final projects will be arranged at the end of the semester. *The class is suitable for students with basic skills of 3D imaging in Maya.

Immersive Experiences +

Akmyrat TuyliyevSyllabus | IMNY-UT.282 | Prerequisites: Creative Computing or permission of the instructor | Last updated: October 20, 2023

This course is designed to provide students with hands-on experience working with interactive and emerging applications for creating immersive experiences, with a focus on designing for virtual reality headsets. The class will also touch on related technologies, methods, and fields including experience design, virtual painting, augmented reality, interactive installation, and 360 video/audio. The course materials will also include readings and discussions on prior art/relevant critical texts.

Intro to Fabrication +

Time to get your hands dirty. Prototypes need to be created, motors have to be mounted, enclosures must be built. Understanding how things are fabricated makes you a better maker.

But hardware is hard. You can’t simply copy and paste an object or working device (not yet anyway), fabrication skills and techniques need to be developed and practiced in order to create quality work. You learn to make by doing.

In this class you will become familiar and comfortable with all the ITP/IMA shop has to offer. We will cover everything from basic hand tools to the beginnings of digital fabrication. You will learn to use the right tool for the job.

There will be weekly assignments created to develop your fabrication techniques. There will be in class lectures, demos, and building assignments. Emphasis will be put on good design practices, material choice, and craftsmanship.

Introduction to Assistive Technology +

Assistive technology is a term that includes a wide variety of technologies for people with disabilities. This two-point survey course is designed to provide students with an overview of the field of assistive technology. Field trips, readings, and guest speakers will provide students with an understanding of current research and development as well as processes used in determining appropriate technologies. Weekly assignments and a final research project.

Introduction to Digital Fabrication +

Do you want to MAKE THINGS with your computer? Are you an artist, engineer, designer, sculptor or architect? Are you a few of those things? How are 3D scanning and 3D modeling different? What materials should I be using? Should I be 3D printing or CNC-ing this CAD file? What is a boolean operation and why is it my new best friend? This class will answer all of your questions. Don’t know what any of these things are? This class will answer those questions also.

By the end of this course, you will be familiar with all that digital fabrication has to offer. We will cover everything from laser to 3D to CNC. You will learn how to identify which digital fabrication technique works best for your projects. But more than that, you will learn what kinds of questions you should be asking in order to complete a project from start to finish. As technology advances at rapid speeds, digital making machines and software are changing just as fast. So instead of just being taught about the machines of today, you will also be given the tools to teach yourself the machines of tomorrow. Emphasis will be put on learning how to ask the right kind of questions to successfully finish a project.

What do you want to make? Let’s make it.

Networked Media +

The network is a fundamental medium for interactivity. It makes possible our interaction with machines, data, and, most importantly, other people. Though the base interaction it supports is simple, a client sends a request to a server, which replies; an incredible variety of systems can be and have been built on top of it. An equally impressive body of media theory has also arisen around its use.

This hybrid theory and technology course will be 50% project driven technical work and 50% theory and discussion. The technical work will utilize JavaScript as both a client and server side programming language to build creative systems on the web. Technical topics will include server and client web frameworks, such as Express, HTML, CSS, templating, and databases. The theory portion of the course will include reading and discussion of past and current media theory texts that relate to the networks of today.

**** it is HIGHLY recommended you take Front End Web Development (or have equivalent front end web development experience) to get the most out of this course. We will be going over fundamentals of HTML/CSS but it would be useful to have prior knowledge ***

Physical Computing +

This course expands the students’ palette for physical interaction design with computational media. We look away from the limitations of the mouse, keyboard and monitor interface of today’s computers, and start instead with the expressive capabilities of the human body. We consider uses of the computer for more than just information retrieval and processing, and at locations other than the home or the office. The platform for the class is a microcontroller, a single-chip computer that can fit in your hand. The core technical concepts include digital, analog and serial input and output. Core interaction design concepts include user observation, affordances, and converting physical action into digital information. Students have weekly lab exercises to build skills with the microcontroller and related tools, and longer assignments in which they apply the principles from weekly labs in creative applications. Both individual work and group work is required.

Prerequisites: Creative Computing, or equivalent knowledge/experience

Quick Introduction to Physical Computing +

Dan O'SullivanIMNY-UT.103 | Last updated: October 20, 2023

Prerequisite: Prior classwork or experience programming – May not have taken Creative Computing (IMNY-UT 101).

Physical Computing is an approach to learning how humans communicate through computers that starts by considering how humans express themselves physically. In this course, we take the human body as a given, and attempt to design computing applications within the limits of its expression.

To realize this goal, you’ll learn how a computer converts the changes in energy given off by our bodies (in the form of sound, light, motion, and other forms) into changing electronic signals that it can read and interpret. You’ll learn about the sensors that do this, and about simple computers called microcontrollers that read sensors and convert their output into data. In the other direction you will learn how to actual physical things in the world with devices like speakers, lights and motors. Finally, you’ll learn how microcontrollers communicate with other computers.

To learn this, you’ll watch people and build devices. You will spend a lot of time building circuits, soldering, writing programs, building structures to hold sensors and controls, and figuring out how best to make all of these things relate to a person’s body.

Note: This course is for students who have not taken Creative Computing (IMNY-UT 101) but who have prior classwork or experience programming. Taking this course enables the waiving of Creative Computing (IMNY-UT 101) in order to take higher level courses in Physical Computing and Experimental Interfaces which otherwise have Creative Computing (IMNY-UT 101) as a prerequisite.

The Code of Music +

This course explores music through the lenses of interactivity and computation.

The first part of the semester consists of a structured exploration of rhythm, melody, timbre, and harmony, from the perspectives of code, design, and music theory. For each musical element, we will hold listening sessions, represent and manipulate the element in code, and create an interactive study around it.

The second part of the semester we will explore algorithmic composition techniques such as Markov Chains, Neural Networks and L-systems. The last weeks of class will be dedicated to the development of a final project —an interactive/generative musical piece.

In-class coding and assignments will be done in p5.js and Tone.js. Introduction to Computational Media (ICM) or equivalent programming experience is required.

This class is a good fit for students who are interested in:

Creating interactive music pieces and digital instruments
Deepening their understanding of how music works
Continuing to develop coding skills they acquired in the Creative Coding course

Prerequisites: Introduction to Computational Media (ICM) or equivalent programming experience is required.
About Luisa Hors: https://www.luisapereira.net/

Topics in Computation and Data: Nature of Code +

Can we capture the unpredictable evolutionary and emergent properties of nature in software? Can understanding the mathematical principles behind our physical world help us to create digital worlds? This class focuses on the programming strategies and techniques behind computer simulations of natural systems. We explore topics ranging from basic mathematics and physics concepts to more advanced simulations of complex systems. Subjects covered include physics simulation, trigonometry, self-organization, genetic algorithms, and neural networks. Examples are demonstrated in JavaScript using p5.js.

Prerequisites: Creative Computing

Instructor Daniel Shiffman Website: https://natureofcode.com/

Topics in Fabrication: Re-Plasticing +

The central focus of this fabrication class is ‘replasticing.’ Replasticing: the act of remaking/reforming single use plastic into new objects.

In addition to learning about plastic’s properties, various forms and history, students will also learn how to fabricate and 3D Print PLA Plastic, DIY recycle and use extruders and injection molds to recast “waste” plastic in their class projects. Students will then take a close look at the waste stream in NYC and Brooklyn, and research the end-of-life cycle for plastics.

The class will culminate in a collaborative project contributing to and creating new solutions for the Tandon Makerspace in managing their excess of PLA 3D print waste. Solutions can be anything from designing recycled plastic objects and tools, to systems for community engagement and efficient processing of the PLA scraps in the Makerspace.

By creating opportunities for communities to have access to DIY recycling, we will re-imagine waste; re-configure design practices; and re-value plastic’s potential in a circular economy.

Prerequisites: Intro to Fabrication

Topics in Media Art: All Resistance is a Creative Act: Art and Activism +

Why are art and design important to an activist framework? How do groups (such as political parties, nonprofits, social justice collectives, among others) create single cohesive brand identities for supposedly “faceless” entities? How do individuals demonstrate their place in the collective through advocacy, purposeful demonstration, and self-branding? In this course, students will generate media art inspired by the study of signature images from social movements (focusing on Civil Rights, Black Lives Matter, LGBTQIA+, Pro Choice, and Women’s movements). Students will learn about the history of images from social movements, and analyze how these images have both generated and demonstrated sociopolitical change. In their final projects, students will apply what they have learned by either creating a campaign video, series of posters, or branding kit for a given media activism campaign, or by writing a research paper on a media activism campaign, analyzing the research it is based on, and preparing a report about the relevancy and effectiveness of the research vis-à-vis the goals of the campaign. Students are also encouraged to analyze their own experiences/perceptions of social movements outside of the scope of materials covered in class.

Topics in Media Art: Alter Egos +

Alter Egos is a course that embraces abstract storytelling, improvisation, resourcefulness, ritual, performance and self-expression through art and technology. Students will develop original characters based on a series of stream of conscious exercises around identity. They will explore various creative techniques, including costuming, sound design, and multimedia collage while experimenting with unique methods of self expression via audio/visual performance. 

Students will assemble recycled materials, field recordings, emerging tech and textiles into costumes, props and digital worlds that embody their invented personas. This course will culminate as a live event showcasing audiovisual performances by participants in costume as their Alter Egos.

Class discussions will examine notions of identity, technology, community, health, privacy and encourage participants to venture outside of their comfort zone to radically imagine new approaches to creative expression.

Prerequisites: Communications Lab: Hypercinema
Instructor Website: http://www.alisantana.com

Topics in Media Art: Comics +

Open to anyone who wants to create comics regardless of drawing experience. Drawing experience UNNECESSARY! In this course students will learn the building blocks of comics – the myriad ways to pair words and images, panels, borders and color – by doing weekly assignments, in class drawing exercises and studying specific graphic novels, comics books and digital/interactive comics.

The last two weeks of class will be devoted to a specific project that can be combined with work in another class. Comics are a powerful medium to tell personal stories, narrative medicine stories, as a tool for advocacy, and for producing a riveting tale of your choosing. We will discuss how comics can be used for entertainment as well as a tool for change. Mostly we will MAKE COMICS.

Please bring:

A notebook of your choosing to class.
A uni ball black pen, fine tip.

Topics in Media Art: Computational Image Deconstruction +

This class explores how as creatives, we can take the wealth of data that each still image contains and re-purpose it. In the first few weeks of the course, students will develop an understanding of technical and creative photographic techniques through lectures, hands-on assignments, and critiques. As the class progresses, students will develop a series on a particular topic of interest (portraits, architecture, street photography). Using p5js we will explore simple scripts to extract information or manipulate the images (what are the most represented colors in the photos? What are the RGB values that make up the image? Can we add movement to the picture?). At the end of the course, students will present their series.

Prerequisite: Creative Computing
About Alan Winslow: www.alanwinslow.com

Topics in Media Art: Design Skills for Responsible Media +

Generative AI and other digital media affect people in unexpected
ways. This is a course in the skills of responsible design and development of all forms of
media covered by IMA and ITP. We will look critically at the belief systems that affect
design, and will build skills for assessing the unexpected implications and consequences
of any new digital project, including generative AI projects. Together, we will create
personal and group processes to bring these issues safely to the surface, and create
standards and guardrails (a “calculus of intentional risk”) that you can apply to your own
work and to work you do in the future.
This course is structured around three comprehensive group assignments:
1. Group project: Produce a case study of an ethical dilemma in a real-world tech
company, based on news reports and other sources. How did this dilemma come
about? How did the company respond? What could they have done differently?
We will discuss these cases, and others, in class.
2. Group or solo project: Produce work in any format [not too elaborate] that brings
an ethical issue to light.
3. Solo project: Propose a design practicum – a set of ethical standard – that would
help you evaluate the impact of one or more pieces of your own work (or
someone else’s you know well). Use this “calculus of intentional risk” to explore
how you would change the design and use of these projects.
The class lectures will cover themes related to these three assignments, drawing on the
instructors’ extensive research in the fields of organizational and technological ethics and
responsibility. The recently published book, The AI Dilemma: The 7 Principles of
Responsible Technology, will be one resource for the class. We will also draw on work
on responsible technology going on elsewhere throughout NYU.

Topics in Media Art: Generative Art with the Unity Game Engine +

This course will provide an overview of important topics of generative art. On a weekly basis we will cover a new topic, review examples of work within this topic and discuss their influence in generative artworks as well as in a broader art context.

In addition, we cover the fundamental concepts of the C# programming language and its application within the Unity game engine. C# is a widely used, very fast and efficient programming language and can perform significantly faster than P5 and Processing. As such, creating generative art projects using Unity and C# will make our projects faster with higher definition and larger detail than a typical Javascript sketch.

This course is designed for students who want to continue their creative coding practice and are interested in more advanced coding techniques while building their knowledge of C# and Unity. Students should have a solid understanding of programming concepts such as arrays, classes and objects and be comfortable with creative coding (such as with P5).

Topics in Media Art: Geopositioning Genealogy: Personalizing Histories of Plants, Peoples and Places +

Can a plant tell the story of your people and the planet?

This course aims to facilitate student relationships to the planet through the construction of personalized genealogies from family narratives, historical migrations, and plant relationships. Plants, like people, are intelligent life forms that hold memory and transmit knowledge. Students will study edible medicinal plants (herbs) to unlock their expertise on the past, present and future of the planet and its peoples. Participants will learn how to grow medicinal plants, employ ethical research practices, and develop their family archives.

Students will begin by examining various ways plants establish communities across the planet and studying the complex chemical and social lives of plants. Next, learners will parallel postcolonial theories of plants and peoples to connect the ways plants, like humans, seeded themselves across the globe for survival. Finally, students will incorporate primary sources from the family narrative, oral history, and government archives to help students visualize botanical imprints on their ethnic, racial, and national identities.

Learners will survey the research of botanists, horticulturalists, folk medicine practitioners, and urban gardeners. The works of Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, Jamaica Kincaid, and Fred Moten will provide the course’s literary foundation. The art practices of Fred Wilson, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Alison Janae Hamilton, and Deb Willis will create avenues for social art exploration. Importantly, students will read research from a cross section of postcolonial theorists challenging Western cartography and naming conventions of land.

About Tanika Williams: www.tanikawilliams.net

Topics in Media Art: How To Be a Professional YouTuber +

Everyone wants to be a YouTuber, but building a business as a digital creator is about more than just being an online celebrity. In this course, students will learn how to build a YouTube channel, from titles and thumbnails to video production to sponsor relationships to analytics and collaborations. We will examine what it takes to build a sustainable business around online video, learning from real-world examples and applying them to the students’ own YouTube channels.

Topics in Media Art: Interactive Multi-Screen Experiences +

We experience screens daily in many forms: in our hands, on our desktops, on walls and public installations as we travel. This course will explore the creative possibilities of real-time interactive and reactive art on screens in various forms. Using the recently developed p5VideoKit we will create standalone installations. p5VideoKit is a new library of live video effects – building on p5js – presented as a dashboard for mixing video in the browser. This library allows the user to apply visual effects to live video from connected cameras and sensors or streaming from devices on the internet. p5VideoKit is open source and can be extended with the user’s p5js code for a plethora of visual effects and interactivity. One possible application of p5Videokit would be a public facing installation allowing anonymous people on the street to use their hand held devices to interact with large street facing screens, thereby collaborating on real time creation of “digital graffiti”.

Building on ICM, students will learn how to adapt simple sketches into components of p5VideoKit so that algorithms can be quickly composited and orchestrated into more complex works. Students will also learn how to edit and share code beyond the p5js editor, use nodejs/javascript to automate deployment of installations, and remotely configure dedicated computers with long running installations. Several dedicated computers and screens will be available to preview installations on the floor and street facing areas of the 370 Jay Street campus.

Prerequisites: ICM or equivalent coding experience.

About John Henry Thompson: http://johnhenrythompson.com

Topics in Media Art: IRL/URL Performing Hybrid Systems +

This course is a unique collaboration between the Collaborative Arts and IMA Tisch departments, and CultureHub at LaMaMa. During the pandemic many performing artists moved their work online, leading to an increasing acceptance of experimental practices that their predecessors developed in online work for the past 30 years. In IRL/URL_Performing Hybrid Systems, students will have the opportunity to design, prototype, and present collaborative projects that build on this tradition, blending both physical and virtual elements. Over the course of the semester, students will have the opportunity to study at La MaMa’s CultureHub studio where they will be introduced to video, lighting, sound, and cueing systems. In addition, students will learn creative coding fundamentals allowing them to network multiple softwares and devices generating real-time feedback systems. The class will culminate with a final showing that will be presented online and broadcast from the CultureHub studio.

Topics in Media Art: Open Call +

This class is for students interested in making, displaying and installing art for interactive media art exhibitions. This class will prepare you to apply for and develop work for open calls and everything else that happens after you are selected. The class will have an opportunity to exhibit a group show in a real NYC gallery towards the end of the semester. The students will collaborate to title, describe and document the works in the show. They will also have an opportunity to do a public talk back about their work, organize a reception and add a piece to their portfolio.

Topics in Media Art: Performance in Virtual Space +

Focusing on motion capture (ak. MoCap), this class introduces basic performance skills alongside 3d graphic manipulation to create real-time virtual experiences. In this class we will have the opportunity to virtually build sets, interact with props, and design unique characters to tell stories or engage with audiences. Utilizing Optitrack Motion Capture system and Unreal Gaming Engine; we will create, rig, animate, and perform as avatars.

Topics in Media Art: Politics of Code +

Current description based on NYUAD iteration of the course (https://github.com/jbenno/nyuad_politics_of_code). Please be advised this is in the process of being-updated by the instructor.

Deconstructing the design and implementation of software as a political medium and re-building functional alternatives.

Code is political. It is a means of political processes and activism. It is political inherently by the ethical choices often hidden in the black box of The Algorithm. In the course we aim to deconstruct the design, implementation, and data of software as a political medium. We will work through political applications such as simulations, ownership of intangible assets, predictive policing, algorithmic recommendations, suggestions, and filters, social networks, and the blockchain.

Along with an introduction to the related political theory and media studies, students will work on several hands-on projects to offer actual or speculative alternatives to the existing systems. To that end, this course will include several workshops in JavaScript, Python, and other tools.

Topics in Media Art: Shared Minds +

What capabilities does computational media have for depicting and conveying the experience of our minds? In using the new possibilities of machine learning networks to create media, what should we take or leave from cinema, social media and virtual reality?

In this course we will start out by turning inward to reflect on how our mind transcends time and space and how artificial neural networks might better capture the multidimensional space of our thought. We then turn to using cloud networking and databases to share our thinking with other people across time and space. Finally we need to flatten everything back into 4D interfaces that, while being stuck in time and space, can reach our embodied, emotional and experiential ways of understanding of the world.

The class will operate at a conceptual level, inviting students’ empirical, psychological and philosophical investigations of the nature of their experience and how to convey it with art and story. It will ask students to look critically at existing computational media’s tendencies to bore, misinform, divide or inflame its users.

But this is also very much a coding class where students will prototype their own ideas for new forms of media first with machine learning models like Stable Diffusion using Huggingface APIs or Colab notebooks, and then with networking and databases using Firebase or P5 Live Media, and finally with 3D graphics using the threejs library. Students can substitute other coding tools but game engines will not work for this class. The coding is in javascript, with touches of python, and is a natural sequel to Creative Computing.

Topics in Media Art: Stories of Illness: Graphic and Narrative Medicine +

Narrative holds a central role in the discourse of health, illness, caregiving, and disability. It also holds an increasingly growing role in clinical practice, research, and health education. This course examines its role in both Graphic Medicine and Narrative Medicine. Students will interrogate health culture through readings, observational exercises, and weekly creative practice. Additionally, students will create a final project, in any medium, communicating stories about health, medicine, and the experience of illness.

Topics in Media Art: Storytelling for Project Development +

This course challenges how you use technology to tell a story. We will start with storytelling linear basics and progress towards non-linear storytelling and new media arts considerations. This course is helpful for participants who want more grounding in storytelling, want to strengthen their voice, and are interested in building worlds beyond the one we currently experience. This course considers a range of mediums but does not expect you to be an expert in any; it allows you to experiment and explore different mediums throughout the semester.  

We will spend the beginning of the semester researching and engaging in small assignments based on storytelling basics, primarily focused on writing and prepping storyboards and scripts, basics of visual design, and interaction design. Our midterm will ask the class to retell the same story by translating a prose text into the medium of your choice. The last section of the course will focus on a survey of new media storytelling. Students will concentrate on a final project which asks them to present a story (original or adopted) via the medium of their choice. Final projects are critiqued based on storytelling techniques discussed in class, clarity of story, and presentation. You do not have to come in with a project in mind; however, if you do, there will be plenty of space in your final assignment to explore it, considering the techniques practiced in class.

Topics in Media Art: The Art of Perception +

“How does our auditory and visual perception influence our understanding and interaction with the world? In this course, we will delve into the science and application of these senses, employing this knowledge as a foundation to create new works and challenge our perception of familiar ones.

Each week, we will dissect a particular aspect of our senses, investigate works that have capitalized on this understanding, and produce new creations that stretch the boundaries of our sensory comprehension. Drawing on fields from cognitive psychology to media theory, from psychoacoustics to philosophy, this highly interdisciplinary course will pull from a breadth of research to form a holistic perspective on how we perceive the world.

This course will be technology agnostic, instead emphasizing a format based on critique, any technical aspects will be taught in online tutorials outside of class. Students should be comfortable with sharing and discussing their work in class.”

Topics in Media Art: Three.js for Makers +

“In this increasingly online world, the internet has proven to be a powerful tool that can connect us with one another, host meaningful experiences, and provoke critical thinking. In this class, students will have an opportunity to learn about breaking out of the 2D web page and the fundamentals of working with 3D on the web.

This course hopes to introduce new avenues for creative expression and experimentation via the web and promote learning practical web development skills through experiential learning. Students will use Three.js to create dynamic and immersive web-based experiences that push the boundaries of what is possible online.

The course is intended for technologists who have no programming or computer science background but are interested in 3D exploration on the web. Nothing more than a basic understanding and familiarity with CSS, HTML, and Javascript is required.”

Topics in Media Art: Useless Machines +

Useless Machines is about redefining “usefulness.” Through making, we will explore what it means, on an ideological, political and historical level, to create something ‘useful’ or ‘useless.’ We will play with these definitions and explore how these objects serve to be humorous, critical, disruptive and at times… useful. 

We will study ‘useless’ machines throughout history, which will provoke conversations and disagreements around the implications of existing and emerging technologies. The students will design ‘useless’ machines for their final project.  Examples of ‘useless’ machines are drawn from Kenji Kawakami’s The Big Bento Box of Unuseless Japanese Inventions, Dunne & Raby’s Speculative Everything, Stephanie Dinkins’ Conversations with Bina 48, https://esoteric.codes/, CW&T, Mimi Ọnụọha’s  Missing Data, Jacques Carelman’s Catalog of Impossible Objects, viral videos/objects and much more.

Instructor Blair Simmons Website: www.Blairsimmons.com

Topics in Physical Computing and Experimental Interfaces: Energy +

From the most ephemeral thought to the rise and fall of civilizations, every aspect of your life, and indeed the universe, involves energy. Energy has been called the “universal currency” by prolific science author Vaclav Smil, but also “a very subtle concept… very, very difficult to get right” by Noble physicist Richard Feynman. It is precisely this combination of importance and subtlety that motivates the Energy class. Maybe you fear the existential threat of anthropogenic climate change, or maybe you just want your physical computing projects to work better. Either way, the class will help you understand energy quantitatively and intuitively, and incorporate that knowledge in your projects (and perhaps your life).

How? Building on skills introduced in Creative Computing, we will generate and measure electricity in order to see and feel energy in its various forms. We will turn kinetic and solar energy into electrical energy, store that in batteries and capacitors, and use it to power projects. We will develop knowledge useful in a variety of areas, from citizen-science to art installations, and address topics such as climate change and infrastructure access through the lens of energy. Students will build a final project using skills learned in the class.

Prerequisites: Creative Computing

Instructor Jeffrey Feddersen Website: https://www.fddrsn.net/

Topics in Physical Computing and Experimental Interfaces: Interaction as Art Medium +

While traditional forms of art such as painting and sculpture only expect intellectual communication with the spectator, interactive arts consider the audience as active participants and directly involve their physical bodies and actions. Interactive art invites its audience to have a conversation with the artwork or even be part of it. Well designed interactions add new meanings to the artwork and enhance effective and memorable communication with the viewer through their magical quality.

Artists have achieved interactivity in their art through different strategies based on various technologies. For example, some projects have physical interfaces such as buttons and knobs, some projects react to the audience’s presence or specific body movements, and yet others require collaborations between the audience as part of the interaction process. Some artwork involves interactions that require a long period of time for the engagement. In many of these interactive art projects, interaction methods are deeply embedded into the soul and voice of the work itself.

In this class, we will explore interaction as an artistic medium. We will be looking at interactive media art history through the lens of interaction and technology to explore their potential as art making tools. Every other week, you will be introduced to a new interaction strategy along with a group of artists and projects through lectures, discussions, and a field trip. During in-class labs and a mini hackathon, you will learn about relevant technologies and skills for the interaction strategies and build your own project to be in conversation with the artists and projects. You will also explore and discuss the future of interactions and how interactive art can contribute to innovations in interactions, and vice versa. You will also learn about how to contextualize, articulate, and communicate your project in an artistic way.

Technical topics covered in class include but are not limited to: physical computing, sensor research, sensor programming, interaction design, and body tracking using cameras (on p5.js), using depth cameras.

Learning Objectives
Critically approach and examine different interaction strategies in interactive artwork
Obtain sensibilities and techniques to translate abstract idea into interactive form (installations, objects, or systems) that is engaging to the audience
Experiment with innovative forms and artistic possibilities of interaction
Effectively utilizes computer programming, electronic circuit design, and sensors to complete an interactive project
Practice contextualizing and articulating artistic creations
Prerequisite

Creative Computing (IMA) or equivalent knowledge.

Course Requirements

This class meets once a week for 3 hours for 14 weeks. Class meetings consist of lectures, demos, in-class labs, reading discussions, feedback sessions for assignments, and group activities. There will be a mini hackathon and a field trip. Students are expected to actively participate in class, participate in discussions, prepare lab materials such as physical computing components, create their own projects, and turn in weekly assignments. Students are encouraged to book office hours with the instructor, GA, or ITP residents to ask questions, connect better with the class, and/or seek support.

Topics in Physical Computing and Experimental Interfaces: Large Scale Kinetic Installation +

Have you ever wanted to make something bigger than a tabletop? Do you like art that physically moves? Well if you answered yes to those questions then this is the class for you. Working in large site-specific formats is always an enticing proposition, this course is designed to bring students through the process of scaling a concept into a large-scale kinetic installation. Working individually at first and then moving into group work this class also teaches how to collaborate, communicate, and compromise to reach a common goal. Students will engage in a hands-on approach to designing, budgeting, and building an installation.

Prerequisites: Intro to Fab or Intro to DigiFab

User Experience Design +

This course aims to provide students with the critical thinking and practical skills for creating effective and compelling interfaces. We will dissect what a compelling user experience is and discuss and apply design methods for creating one. Throughout this 14-week course we will examine a wide range of examples of interfaces with a focus on understanding the attributes of a successful interface and applying proven research, mapping and testing techniques. The class format will include lectures, case studies, student presentations, discussions of readings and in-class design exercises. The format is very hands-on with assignments that focus on problems that are typical of those a UX designer will encounter in the professional world.