About the Land Arts of the American West Graduate Certificate
The 12-hour Land Arts of the American West Graduate Certificate in the College of Architecture centers on the transdisciplinary Land Arts field program that investigates the intersection of human construction and the evolving nature of the planet. The program leverages immersive field experience in the desert southwest as a primary pedagogic agent to support research that opens horizons of perception, probes depths of inquiry, and advances understanding of human actions shaping environments. Land Arts attracts architects, artists, and writers from across the university and beyond to a “semester abroad in our own backyard” that travels 6,000 miles overland while camping for two months to experience major land art monuments—Double Negative, Spiral Jetty, Sun Tunnels, The Lightning Field—while also visiting sites to expand understanding of what land art might be, such as pre-contact archeology, military and industrial facilities, and contemporary infrastructure. Throughout the travels and on campus participants make work in response to their experience, which is exhibited at the Museum of Texas Tech University to conclude the field season.
Student participants have come from North America, Australia, Chile, Spain, Belgium and Sweden to study at Texas Tech during or after their work at the universities of Pennsylvania, Texas at Austin, Iowa, South Florida, California at Berkeley and Riverside, Carnegie Mellon, New York University, Goldsmith’s in London, Cranbrook, Rhode Island School of Design, Whitman College, Bard College, and Yale.
To help negotiate the multivalent meaning of the places visited, and to shed light on strategies to aid their comprehension, the Land Arts program invites the wisdom of field guests—writers, artists and interpreters—to join specific portions of our journey. Past field guests have included Center for Land Use Interpretation director Matthew Coolidge, Utah Museum of Fine Arts director Gretchen Dietrich, Remote Studio director Lori Ryker, Adobe Alliance founder Simone Swan; artists Deborah Stratman, Postcommodity, Joan Jonas, and Zoe Leonard; art Historians Ann Reynolds, Kevin Chua, and Monty Paret; architects Urs Peter Flueckiger, David Gregor, Jack Sanders, and Nichole Wiedemann; and writers Charles Bowden, Lucy Lippard, Barry Lopez.
The specialty courses in this certificate emphasize the merits, rigors and risks of field work; the in-depth value of seminar-based dialog; the public exhibition of research produced products; and the synthesis, documentation and reflection of the experience as a whole in written and visual forms.
Contact: Chris Taylor, Associate Professor of Architecture and Director of Land Arts of the American West at Texas Tech, 806.834.1589, firstname.lastname@example.org, http://landarts.org