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Home / College Catalog / 2013-15 / Academic Programs / School of the Arts / Art+Design

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Undergraduate Sculpture Courses

Note: In sequenced courses (e.g., I, II, III, IV), successful completion of each course is a prerequisite for the next course in the sequence. For example, Direct Metal I is a prerequisite for Direct Metal II.

Introduction to Sculpture
SCP 1500
/ 2 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
An introductory course in sculpture for students from other disciplines. Focus is placed on the development of 3-D design (form, space, object, composition) and on strengthening observational skills. A variety of materials and form-making processes are explored.

Direct Metal I and II
SCP 2080
and 3260 / 3 credits (per semester)

I: Fall; II: Spring
Instruction in acetylene gas welding and all the tools required for direct metal fabrication of sculpture. The focus varies each semester (within the parameters of contemporary, nonfigurative sculpture) and includes the refining of technical form-making and welding skills.
Prerequisite for SCP 3260: VIS 1260

Thinking in Three Dimensions
SCP 2110
/ 3 credits / Every semester
Emphasizes the conceptual aspects of sculpture while continuing the development of technical skills in various processes and materials. The course is structured around assignments that develop individual industry, research skills, creative expressiveness, and class participation.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260
Recommended concurrent studies: SCP 2120 or 2280

Materials and Methods
SCP 2120
/ 3 credits / Every semester
Students learn to work with traditional sculpture materials and techniques, exploring the use of wood and metal as both a means to an end and a final material. Students create a “how to” book from their notes, including all methodologies taught, resources found, and materials used.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260

Introduction to Wood
SCP 2150
/ 3 credits / Every semester
The specific visual and structural properties of wood are discussed with application to both functional and nonfunctional sculpture. Basic construction and forming techniques are introduced.

Introduction to Wood: Sculptural Techniques
SCP 2155
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Students are introduced to the specific visual and structural properties of wood, as well as techniques for working with wood from a sculptor’s perspective. Open to all visual arts majors.
Prerequisite: SCP 2120

SCP 2160
/ 2 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Projects investigate collage from a variety of approaches, then move to assemblage sculpture and finally diorama boxes and object transformation. This exploration of the unique possibilities of collage/assemblage may include work with found objects and fabricated forms.
Prerequisite: SCP 2080, 2120, or 2150

Figure Modeling and Drawing
SCP 2200
/ 3 credits / Every semester
Clay modeling from the human figure. Drawing and 2-D media are used for support and insight into issues of figuration. Armature construction and relief sculpture are explored.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260

Ceramic Sculpture
SCP 2270
/ 3 credits / Fall
Focuses on clay as a sculptural medium with emphasis on process and the development of sculptural ideas. Various techniques are taught, including slab building, modeling, and some mold making for clay.
Prerequisite: SCP 2120

Digital Tools for Sculptors
SCP 2280
/ 3 credits / Fall
Provides students with a digital toolset for creating sculpture today. Students explore the role of 2-D drawing tools, animation, video editing, and 3-D modeling software in the creation of sculptures and installations. The focus is on the potential of using virtual and physical tools together in the production of art works.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260

Video Art I
SCP 2420
/ 3 credits / Every semester
An introduction to video as a creative visual, auditory, and spatial medium. Students learn the fundamentals of video production with the goal of making original work in the genres of single-channel tape, performance, and installation. At the same time, students are introduced to key works in the history of time-based arts in a weekly thematic program of viewing, listening, reading, and critique.

The Digital Object
SCP 2600
/ 2 or 3 credits (variable) / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Three-dimensional digital objects mostly remain virtual, experienced only in computer and video games, in cinema, online, and in immersive or semi-immersive virtual environments. This course enables the building and actualization of virtual form into sculptural form using state-of-the-art computer object-generation techniques.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260

Sculpture Seminar
SCP 2880
/ 3 credits / Spring
A survey of contemporary artists and movements, ideas, and texts pertinent to current sculptural practice. A combination of lectures, reading-based discussions, workshops, and museum/gallery visits familiarize students with contemporary art discourse. Emphasis is on the evolving and expanding field of sculpture, including installation, performance, time-based media, and other object-making, material-based practices.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260

Introduction to Video Art
SCP 3006
/ 2 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
In this introduction to the discipline of video art, students expand their knowledge of nonlinear editing as it pertains to the exhibition of video. Conceptual approaches may include non-narrative structures, installation art, and performance art as they relate to the moving image.
Note: Students must have access to and be able to use a DV camcorder, webcam, camera phone, or other video-recording device that can capture moving images of decent quality and upload them to a computer for editing.
Prerequisite: Experience in shooting and editing digital video

Bronze Casting
SCP 3070
/ 3 credits / Every semester
Students produce forms in clay or wax and cast them in bronze. The traditional methods of lost-wax casting are explored, and students participate in all aspects of bronze foundry work.

Performance Art
SCP 3155
/ 3 credits / Fall
An introduction to performance art as a creative, visual, experiential, and time-based medium. Through structured projects, students learn ways to create and document performance pieces. Projects may include live performances, video and photo documentation of private actions, interactive pieces, and sculpture/installation works. Through presentation and lectures, students are introduced to significant historical and contemporary works. All mediums and backgrounds welcome.

Shelters and Structures
SCP 3190
/ 3 credits / Fall
Using Gaston Bachelard’s The Poetics of Space as a text, students investigate the idea of shelters and structures, both built and imaginary, as a source for 3-D work ranging from the miniature to the environmental, from the substantial to the ephemeral.

Off the Grid: Curves with Wood
SCP 3240
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
To design and make objects that use curves, the designer/maker must think and act “off the grid.” This class explores form by using curves to define line and volume. Students learn about and experience the techniques used to produce curvilinear forms in wood (e.g., shaping, steam bending, bent laminations, panel forming, pattern routing, jig making and finishing).
Prerequisite: SCP 2150

Direct Metal II
SCP 3260
Refer to SCP 2080 for description.

Intermediate Wood I and II
SCP 3270
and 3275 / 3 credits (per semester)
I: Every semester; II: Special topic (offered irregularly)
In these sequential courses, information and experience gained in SCP 2150 are used to develop a more comprehensive understanding of the way an object’s overall form is affected by the methods used in its construction. More complex joinery and shaping processes are presented and practiced.
Prerequisite: SCP 2150 or 2155

SCP 3280
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Combines nontraditional photographic production with digital and hands-on fabrication techniques to investigate the fluid dynamic between image and form. Focusing on the politics, economics, and aesthetics of a data-driven culture, this course takes a critical project-based approach to bridging the virtual-physical divide. By exploring various imaging processes, students apply an additional layer of content in their sculpture.

Digital Dimensions
SCP 3310
/ 3 credits / Every semester
In this studio introduction, students explore the relationship between the three-dimensional world and digital technology. In this creative new-media environment, students are given a foundation for developing 3-D content and integrating it into their preferred field. Students generate digital objects, prepare them for real-world fabrication, and create virtual-reality simulations and photorealistic sculpture proposals.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260 or, for new media majors, NME 2100

Public Art: Making a Proposal
SCP 3350
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Takes advanced students through the process leading to the fabrication and installation of a public art commission. Students answer a call for proposals; create a professional-level response, including a written statement, model, drawings, budget, and fabrication schedule; and present to a committee of experts for appraisal. This course is especially recommended to any student considering making a public art proposal for the Purchase College campus.

Theatre of the Oppressed: Process to Action
SCP 3356
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Exploring techniques of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, this course uses the arsenal of Theatre of the Oppressed exercises as a process to further understand self, each other, and surrounding social systems. Individual project forms may vary (sculpture, writing, etc.). In addition, the class makes a forum theatre piece to be performed with the campus community.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

Special Topics in Glass
SCP 3410
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Students explore various techniques using glass as an artistic medium. Demonstrations, image presentations, and critiques augment the work done in class.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

Special Topics in Sculpture
SCP 3415
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
An extensive study of a particular topic or technique in sculpture. Topics vary each semester.

Video Art II
SCP 3420
/ 3 credits / Every semester
A workshop devoted to the production of independent video projects. Students are expected to have some facility with electronic cameras, sound, and editing techniques and to be highly motivated in the use of video as a creative tool. The course is strongly (though not exclusively) focused on video installation, exploring both its unique properties as a mixed-media, time-based form and its relationship to other contemporary 3-D practices.
Prerequisite: SCP or NME 2420 and, for new media majors, NME 2100

Aural Electronics
SCP 3430
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Blending electronics, sound, and sculpture, this course focuses on the creation of simple analog audio circuits for artistic expression. Starting with basic concepts, the creation and modulation of sound are studied with an emphasis on craft and experimentation.

Direct Carving
SCP 3470
/ 3 credits / Every third semester
An introduction to carving as a discipline in sculpture. Initial emphasis is placed on technical issues of tools and process with the intent of using carving as a method of producing art objects. Historical and contemporary issues are also explored.
Prerequisite: SCP 2120 or 2150

Multiples: Methods for Making
SCP 3480
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Various methods used to make sculptural multiples are explored. Mold-making techniques are taught in clay, glass, paper, and mixed media. Assignments focus on achieving technical expertise and understanding the use of the multiple in contemporary sculpture.
Prerequisite: VIS 1260

SCP 3530
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
An introduction to and overview of the fundamentals of animation as a conceptual and technical medium. Students learn the historical and conceptual background of animation and create a series of works within the medium. In addition to digital video and still camera skills, the class explores stop motion, 2-D, and 3-D animation in combination with traditional practices, including painting, drawing, sculpture, and printmaking.

Field Trips: Looking at Sculpture
SCP 3540
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Weekly field trips to gallery and museum exhibitions of contemporary sculpture in New York City. Students write responses on a regular basis, both analyzing the exhibitions seen and relating them to their own work. Several classes are held on campus to discuss each student’s current studio work.

Junior Sculpture Studio I and II
SCP 3550
and 3560 / 3 credits (per semester)
I: Fall; II: Spring
This two-semester course is intended to foster the discovery and sharpening of personal vision and the development of personal initiative and self-motivation. Students have the opportunity to work independently on self-generated projects, which are then presented for both group and individual critique. Required for sculpture majors.
Prerequisite: Limited to visual arts majors who have completed 60 studio credits and intend to complete a senior project in sculpture

SCP 3570
/ 3 credits / Every semester
This intensive exploration of installation art consists of a series of temporary projects that explore site-specific work, which may include a variety of media. Taking into account the range of sensory experience, space and time take on a greater importance than in object-based art works.
Prerequisite: SCP 2120, or SCP 2080 and 2150

Sound/Interactive Media I
SCP 3630
/ 3 credits / Every semester
Sound is explored as material in the context of the visual arts, using DAT recorders, sampling, synthesis, processing, computers, sensor control, and MIDI systems. Projects may include making sonic instruments, sounding objects, and experimental video; ambient, interactive, performative, and multimedia installations; and surround-sound DVDs. Advanced technological means enable uncharted explorations in the time-based arts.

Sound/Interactive Media II
SCP 3640
/ 3 credits / Every semester
A continuation of SCP 3630, for advanced sound and multimedia projects. Sound is further explored in ambient, interactive, performative, time-based, and site-specific installations. Tools available include the Kurzwell K2600 Architectural Synthesis System and Macintosh computers with mixing, synthesis, and DVD surround-sound mastering technology. Interactive programs in the studio include MAX, Jitter, and Cyclops.
Prerequisite: SCP 3630

Immersive Sound Architectures
SCP 3650
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Students explore and create sound events and installations from a sculptural and an architectural perspective. This includes listening, recording, playing back, and simulating sound in space. Tools include multichannel systems, the KDFX processor, Ableton Live, Max, MIDI, Open Sound Control (OSC), and handmade instruments/circuits. Collaborations and workshops enable advanced students to plan, construct, budget, and document sonic events in public spaces.
Prerequisite: SCP 3630, MCO 1310, MCO 3330, or NME 1060, or permission of instructor

Advanced Digital Fabrication
SCP 3660
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Investigates fabrication techniques for building complex structures with the use of computer-aided-manufacturing machines, such as laser cutters, CNC routers, 3-D printers, and vacuum forming. Focusing on such concepts as “design for the other 90 percent,” modular architecture, scalability, material translations, and simple kinetic components, students are asked to reflect on their manufactured environment and respond to it.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor; SCP 3310 recommended

Studio Assistant
SCP 3950
Refer to PAD 3950 in Painting and Drawing Courses for description.

Special Topics in Metal
SCP 4100
/ 2 credits / Every semester
Students explore alternative or expanded practices in metal. These may include both processes and materials that do not overlap with currently offered classes. Materials may include aluminum, iron, and titanium. Processes may include furnace building, mold making, and metal casting. Demonstration, image presentation, and critique augment the actual work done in class.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

Advanced Video Workshop
SCP 4200
/ 3 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
A select group of advanced students focus on independent projects working within a specific video genre. Explorations may include video animation, installation, performance, documentary, or another specific video application. Lectures and presentations augment the students’ hands-on work.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

Senior Seminar I
SCP 4800
/ 3 credits / Fall
Focuses on commitment and professional practice. Students generate portfolios and documentation materials of their own work. Public speaking is emphasized as students learn to articulate and clarify their own work. Teaching methods include lectures, discussions, readings, and field trips. Required for all students undertaking a senior project in sculpture.
Prerequisite: Declared concentration in sculpture

Senior Seminar II
SCP 4810
/ 3 credits / Spring
Extends the goals of SCP 4800, preparing students for the “real world” after graduation. Students research venues for their work, write grant proposals, investigate job possibilities, etc. Contemporary issues in sculpture are addressed through readings and discussions. Required for all students undertaking a senior project in sculpture.
Prerequisite: SCP 4800

Senior Project I and II
SCP 4990 and 4991 / 4 credits (per semester) / Every year
The two-semester, 8-credit senior project is required for all sculpture majors in their senior year. It is an intensive independent study undertaken with faculty sponsorship, in which students pursue a particular theme or topic as a culmination of their undergraduate experience. A written thesis and visual documentation of the project must be submitted to the Library before graduation.

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