In 1955, the Printmaking Department was officially established. Initially, three majors were set up in the department: woodcut, lithograph and copperplate. Li Hua made in-depth exploration in professional techniques. Huang Yongyu explored watermark woodcut. And Li Hongren and Chen Xiaonan conducted teaching exploration in lithograph and copperplate. From 1962 to 1965, the Printmaking Department set up four studios: Li Hua, Wang Qi, Gu Yuan, and Huang Yongyu. So far, the preliminary teaching system of the Printmaking Department was basically established. Later, the atelier system was transitioned to studio system, and woodcut, copperplate and lithograph studios were set up. In 1981, the first silkscreen print studio was established in China. At that time, the Printmaking Department started graduate program and advanced study program, accumulating reserve forces for the development of faculty in printmaking major for the associated colleges and universities. A photography studio was set up in 1991. And in 1999, a traditional Chinese printmaking studio was set up. Meanwhile, a printmaking material and new technology studio was under preparation. In 2003, the supervisor studio system became the main body of teaching, and six supervisor studios were established. The original various types of studios were merged into a printmaking technique studio.
The establishment of the supervisor studio is conducive to the inheritance of artistic ideas and maintenance of the position of domestic academic leadership, and it is also an international art education model. Under the guidance of the cultural thoughts of socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era, and based on traditional Chinese culture, In 2016, Director Wang Huaxiang prepared and established the “International Academic Printmaking Alliance”, building a high-end platform for international printmaking to broadly expand the influence of the Printmaking Department of Central Academy of Fine Arts(CAFA) in the world. The establishment of International Academic Printmaking Alliance has transformed Chinese printmakers and Chinese printmaking education from an imitator to an international interlocutor and leader.
Since its establishment, Li Hua, Wu Biduan, Song Yuanwen, Tan Quanshu, Guang Jun, Wu Changjiang, Su Xinping, and Wang Huaxiang have acted as the director of the Printmaking Department. They have relentlessly adjusted and improved the teaching system and organizational structure to meet the requirements of professional talents in printmaking in the new era. At present, the Printmaking Department, based on the tradition, is striving to seek new breakthroughs in the context of globalization, “let the tradition get closer and the experiment go further”, and make contributions to the overall pattern of the development of China’s printmaking cause.
The Goal of Talent Cultivation
Students are expected to possess solid ability in terms of plastic arts, artistic expression, transfer of thinking and artistic language creativity, understand Chinese and foreign knowledge of art history and art theories, proficiently master printmaking skills and art creation methods, can create high-quality art works, and have basic theoretical level to expound professional issues. They are expected to become art workers with broad vision and strong adaptability.
The Requirements of Talent Cultivation
Quality structure: 1) academic ethics: students should have correct ideas about the world, life and values, abide by professional ethics and ethical standards, establish lofty artistic ideals and professional ideas, respect tradition, be brave to innovate, and have firm professional beliefs. 2) professional quality: students should have high cultural sense and artistic accomplishments, understand Chinese and foreign art history and art theories, master creative methods of printmaking major, can create high-quality art works, and possess basic theoretical level to expound professional issues. 3) professionalism: students should have a passion for art and a sense of advocacy for humanistic spirit, and have the courage to assume the responsibility of inheriting and innovating human culture and art.
Knowledge: 1) basic knowledge: students are supposed to have knowledge of history, literature, and art history, learn broadly, and build a solid knowledge foundation for art creation practice. 2) professional knowledge: students should master various basic techniques and art creation methods, professional tools and materials, understand the history, the existing status and the development trend of the major, be familiar with art creation rules and aesthetic characteristics, language of expression, and can fully integrate the skills and theories learnt in the major and apply them to art creation.
Ability: 1) the ability to acquire knowledge: understand the relevant literature and classic works of the major, be able to learn proactively, and have the ability to acquire new knowledge. 2) professional art creation ability: students should possess the ability of making in-depth exploration of creative techniques and theories, and the ability to apply the techniques and artistic language learnt to creative practice. 3) social practice ability: students should be able to adapt to changes in the environment of the times, use the skills and theories learnt to solve problems encountered in work, develop an effective thinking system, and serve the society in accordance with specific needs.
At present, the Printmaking Department has six supervisor studios and six print studios (woodcut print, Chinese traditional print, copperplate print, lithograph print, silkscreen print and digital print)
The First Studio of the Printmaking Department
Arrangement of Courses
1. Historical Origin and Interpretation of Concept
Early in the 1950s, the Printmaking Department of CAFA set a watermark woodcut course and became the earliest pioneer in higher education for modern watermark woodcut in China. In 1950, Mr. Li Hua published “On Watermark Rubbing Techniques for Woodcut”. Later, Mr. Huang Yongyu, combined with his own art creation experience, also published an article “Techniques for Woodcut Ink Overprint” based on his study of traditional watermark woodcut knowledge in Rongbaozhai. These are the first important documents in China’s modern watermark woodcut teaching. The first generation of watermark printmaking talents in China were developed. Mr. Zhao Ruichun, Liang Dong, Song Yuanwen, Guangjun, Zhang Peiyi, etc. have all created excellent modern watermark woodcut art works.
By adhering to the academic context of modern watermark printmaking constructed by the school’s previous art professionals, we strive to build The First Studio into a contemporary watermark printmaking studio with broad international influence. The construction of courses delivered by The First Studio is based on the activation and contemporary expression of Chinese traditional watermark printmaking, trying to separate watermark prints from the narrow concept of technique category. We hope to develop future artists with sound personality, passion and creativity, and can possess their own unique ways and methods of expression and deep roots in Chinese culture while maintaining broad international vision.
2. Types of Courses
1) Basic courses
There are courses such as Printmaking Theory, Image Composition (black and white, color) Research, Image Generation, Digital Sculpture, and Art Investigation, etc. The purpose of teaching is to consolidate students’ ability of image composition and decomposition, allow them to master computer digital image technology, use the related facilities proficiently, and get prepared for subsequent art creation courses.
2) Major courses
Courses are Traditional Conversion and Contemporary Expression, Woodcut Language Conversion, The Logic of Layer Separation and Splitting, Research on Engraving Technique and Research on Printing Technique, Printmaking Thinking and Digital Technology. The purpose of teaching is to allow students to generate their own artistic personalized language and expression path based on mastering the art creation path and methods of watermark printmaking through the logical association design between courses.
3. Ten Course Sections
（1）The Printmaking Theory
The course content includes two parts: the history of Chinese printmaking and the theory of printmaking. Apart from lecturing, students are also required to read related course materials, develop ability of independent thinking, and formulate their own artistic ideas by combining the history and the existing status of printmaking and the relationship between printmaking and contemporary art, so that they can have a clear orientation and clear goal in their subsequent artistic creation.
1) Understand the history of cognitive printmaking to find their own artistic positioning.
2) Connect the study of printmaking theory with their own creation and let the study possess the significance of guidance.
3) Learn to ask and discuss questions.
4) Learn to take notes in a mind map style and organize their own thinking.
(2) Research on Image Composition (Part 1 and Part 2)
1) Research on Image Composition (Part 1) Black and White Composition:
Students are trained on language of dot-line-plane composed of black and white colors, emphasizing principle factors so that they can master the basis of black and white language for personalized creation, and the ability to add different areas of dot-line-plane on different backgrounds to form a picture.
2) Research on Image Composition (Part 2) Color Composition:
This course mainly teaches the cognition and creative practice of color principle, color composition, paint production and color emotion expression, etc. to help students establish a complete sense of graphic art creation and expression techniques before entering the professional art creation of watermark print. It allows students to have some knowledge of the basic laws of image composition, which paves the way for the follow-up sources of “Woodcut Language Conversion” and “The Logic of Layer Separation and Splitting”.
(3) Woodcut Language Conversion
This course mainly teaches the path and method of conversion from painting image to plane language of woodcut prints, opening up the path of conversion from the language of Western painting modeling to the language of expression of Eastern woodcut prints. It teaches students how to switch from drawing thinking to a language expression serving for woodcut language that echoes the course of The Logic of Layer Separation and Splitting, laying the foundation for students’ watermark woodcut creation.
（4）The Logic of Layer Separation and Splitting ¬¬
Through the previous courses, students have possessed the ability of forming image and converting from the drawing language to the language of printmaking. Then the course of “the logic of layer separation and splitting” follows up, enabling students to learn the creativity of “ layer ” brought by decomposition and aggregation of image in the way of layer separation and splitting. It cultivate students’ concept of “layer” and awareness of “imprint”, and establish a personal unique “characteristics of layer” expression in subsequent artistic creations. Specific teaching methods are：
1. Linking classic cases in the form of lectures and case analysis to stimulate students’ sense of logic of layer separation and splitting.
2. Conducting re-disassembling and re-combining the existing image to train students’ creativity for the same image in different types of of layer separation and splitting.
3. Re-arranging the existing order of layers by means of reverse order and insertion order in the logic of layer separation and splitting .
4.The existing layers are arranged narratively through the way of woodblock printing, so that the narrative logic expression is produced between layers.
（5）Research on Engraving Technique
Through the training of the course “Research on Engraving Technique”, students have the knowledge and use of traditional engraving technique, non-traditional engraving technique, and digital engraving technique. This allows students to explore ways of creating imprint of layer in personalized way while learning about different ways of engraving. The course trains students to understand about engraving and find their own way of creating imprint, stimulate students’ interest in the use of new technology and to explore future language of expression of printmaking. The main teaching contents are:
1. The traditional engraving technique: combine copy and appreciation, teach students the use of Chinese traditional knives.
2. Modern engraving technique: emphasis on the expression and application of knife technique.
3. Non-traditional engraving technique (meaningful imprint）, any way that can create imprint and assert individuality.
4. Digital engraving technique: laser engraving, CNC machine tools.
（6）Research on Printing Technique
1) Research on Printing Technique （Part 1）
This course mainly teaches students to master the conventional printing method, guides students to explore the influence of image by different media materials and substrates on the “printing” behavior itself. It Conceptually tells students from the perspective of concept that it is good to make images on paper as long as indirect methods are used and thus breaks students’ fear toward printing. Students are required to print 100 different visual styles on a single layer and finally every student could develop his or her own "Watermark Bible".
2) Research on Printing Technique（Part 2）
Based on the research on printing technique, this course further emphasizes that students learn to integrate “printing” into their creative expressions. By means of learning the differences in printing methods and printing thinking. Students’ creative imagination is stimulated by printing itself and they find their own transferred language of printing.
（7）The Conversion of Chinese Traditional Printmaking and Its Contemporary Expression
Through the activation of traditional factors, this course allows students to re-recognize tradition and think about art propositions in both traditional and contemporary dimensions. In this way, they can interpret and extend the traditional themes and styles and understand the significance of tradition in the present time.
（8）Printmaking Thinking and Digital Technology
Students learn to create art works with contemporary attributes by means of combining the way of thinking of printmaking with digital technology and get familiar with image generation and application methods. a. image generation: shooting and scanning, etc.; b. image application: digital conversion, digital output; c. robotic arm painting: robotic arm topping, human-computer interaction; d.digital plate making (PS, AI), digital output (paper, cloth, etc.); e. dynamic image: contemporary image. By applying modern digital technology, students learn to improve the mastery and use of modern technology and deal with various possibilities brought by future technological progress.
This course aims to develop students’ respective theoretical interest points based on the previous printmaking theory classes. Combined with their field investigation of history, customs, crafts, landscapes, etc. in their hometown, they learn to formulate different topics to achieve diverse short-term field art creation show. This is a new channel to turn the shortcomings of online courses into the advantages of self-education in local culture. And it can make up for the relatively closed classroom teaching and learning on campus so as to provide a broad-view methodological resource for the creation of contemporary watermark printmaking.
（10）Graduation Project and Thesis
Graduation project: through personalized guidance to students, professors help students find their own artistic expression clues and guide students to use watermark media for art creation.
Graduation thesis: Based on students’ study of courses and case study of the printmaking theories, professors conduct in-depth guidance, help students determine the core thesis statement and research methodology and complete the thesis writing.
Director of The First Studio: Professor Chen Qi
Teachers: Professor Yang Hongwei, Associate professor Huang Yang
The Second Studio of the Printmaking Department
The Printmaking Department began to implement the supervisor studio teaching in 2004, and The Second Studio was established in the same year. At the beginning of the establishment of the studio, Professor Zhou Jirong, Director of The Second Studio, integrated the advantages of the studio. And based on his many years of art practice experience, he proposed to expand the comprehensive media and material research of printmaking in art creation as the main research orientation of The Second Studio, and the idea has been held to the present time. During this period, with many adjustments in this framework, the studio’s teaching setting became more reasonable and perfect. Professor Tang Chenghua served as the teacher. After 2008, Professor Zhang Zhandi and Professor Zhu Yanchun joined the studio teaching.
In teaching, The Second Studio of the Printmaking Department hopes to enable students to experience and discover their inner needs in the process of playing and practicing with the forms and materials they are interested in, and eventually can combine this kind of encountering with the thinking that comes from the encountering and express in artistic language. Here, the research of forms and materials is no longer just about learning technique, but about learning technique as a bridge to discover oneself.
In general, in teaching, The Second Studio hopes that, by means of guiding students' specific practical activities, students would be able to gradually achieve “the unity of knowledge and action” .
The teaching in The Second Studio is divided into two stages with different teaching objectives in the third and fourth grades. In the first stage of the third grade, students extensively learn various techniques of printmaking and the combination of preliminary practice and art creation whereas in the second stage of the fourth grade the importance of art creation is highlighted. And finally graduation art creation is fulfilled.
Learning tradition and art creation are two important parts of art learning. Both restrict each other and complement each other. In the teaching of The Second Studio, we believe it important for students to be able to reflect their individual creativity in each step of the traditional techniques or theory learning, i.e., “how to express myself”. And on this basis, it is hoped to help students broaden their horizon and ambition through the learning and discovery of a wider range of materials and techniques. In other words, the strengthening of the research on integrated materials for printmaking proposed by The Second Studio is to hope that students will not be limited to the methods created by the previous generations, but will use more ways integrated and created by themselves to present their own artistic thinking. Students are encouraged to boldly practice art forms based on their own interests. This kind of practice can maximize students’ enthusiasm to discover their own inner needs as constant innovation in art is the process of self-discovery via continuously discarding the bad and keeping the good.
In teaching, the studio strives to balance the relationship between tradition and creation. On the one hand, the studio teaching advocates creation and discovery; on the other hand, it provides students with as many opportunities as possible to contact, understand and practice traditional culture and traditional techniques. In teaching, the studio hopes to mobilize students’ enthusiasm for art creation. However, it also recognizes that each student needs to return to his origin in the future if he or she wants to grow into an artist and this origin may be himself or herself or his or her own cultural background, etc. Therefore, the teaching of The Second Studio is to boldly advocate the practice of new materials and new techniques while striving to balance tradition and innovation, allowing students to discover their inner self.
Director of The Second Studio: Professor Zhou Jirong
Teachers: Professor Tang Chenghua, Professor Zhu Yanchun, Associate professor Zhang Zhandi
The Third Studio of the Printmaking Department
The artistic proposition
The artistic proposition is to train students’ solid realistic techniques and the ability to express their individuality, move between plane and solid forms, reality and ideal, concrete and abstract images, rationality and emotion. With creative techniques, from concrete to abstract ideas and images, students could personally experience the corresponding relationship and conversion process between natural objects and artworks, and experience the history of art development through their own creative practices. They are expected to study different methods of printmaking and practice on what they have learnt, concern about social life, learn about the related art from the classics of printmaking, and move towards greater art. Also students are guided to break through the traditional model and examine non-art things with an eye of “art”.
Students study Western traditional prints, Chinese emerging woodcuts, folk woodcuts, Western classic copperplate prints, revolutionary woodcuts since the liberation and woodcuts since the new era, etc. The studio aims to exploit the potential of students, train professionals with lofty ideals and social conscience, making The Third Studio one of the influential studios in the Printmaking Department of CAFA.
The Third Studio of the Printmaking Department
Introduction to the core courses
The arrangement of the main courses of the studio contains close logic and continuity, and each link between courses is closely connected. This is summarized and refined through years of teaching practice. The principles of the studio’s curriculum are: the language and concept expansion of woodcut and copperplate prints can’t be separated from creation, and thinking should be related with the goal. Teachers help students establish a system of value standards and criticism according to their own characteristics so that students can autonomously and freely learn to apply the practical and theoretical knowledge they have learned in their art creation. The goal is to enable students to learn active and correct learning methods and way of thinking. Teacher’s personal experience and interest are not important. Instead, students’ true intention of creation is respected. Thus a healthy seed is planted in the soil of students’ art creation, and this seed would take root and sprout in their hearts and then grow naturally.
This course is an important way to understand and master woodcut technique and ontology language by copying traditional classic works and excellent works. In addition, nature imitation and image imitation can exercise students' ability to accurately shape with a carving knife, and thereby establish and strengthen their feelings for the world of concrete painting images.
Thirty-two Ways of Engraving an Image
This is a core course of The Third Studio with several intakes of student practice. It is a course for students to quickly enter woodcut and printmaking creation. And it is a very effective method to train students’ form originality and modeling imagination.
Through the process of copying masters’ works, this course enables students to master the key techniques and gain a deeper understanding of language characteristics and artistic charm of copperplate copy. Students are encouraged to apply technique language to creative practice and test the appropriateness and effectiveness of language technique in practice.
Through understanding the narrative plot and dramatic expression of traditional Western painting, this course helps students understand multiple methods of narrative in contemporary printmaking. It is not only a re-examination of historical painting art, but also a new enlightenment and activation of practical aesthetic creation.
Exploration of Personalized Language
This is a conclusive course for techniques and language learning. Through the exploration and summary of this stage, students learn to analyze their personal characteristics based on the understanding of woodcut, clarify some concepts learnt before, and make predictions for future individual art creation. The main purpose is not to rush students to present a so-called form that is seemingly different from others at this stage, but to hope that students can experience or find a way of learning suitable for themselves.
The goal and prospects of the studio
The role of art education is not just for the purpose of education, but to cultivate high-quality people. The purpose of art education is indeed to cultivate high-quality people with cultural and artistic accomplishments. The Third Studio has completed and would continue the mission of teaching woodcut based on history, reality, individual orientation, and creation. In the next few years, the studio plans to incorporate various woodcuts into the main courses so that students can fully and deeply master all kinds of materials and techniques, even including some cross-major experiments such as video, installation and conceptual art. The goal is to understand “major art”, “cross-boundary art” and “art of life” through the study and exploration of printmaking art and enable students to have a vertical “historical view”, a horizontal “world view” and an in-depth “personal view”, In this way, art education is not just for cultivating professional art practitioners, but more importantly, it makes art an important means of improving intelligence, soothing mind, beautifying and creating “new humans”.
Director of The Third Studio: Professor Li Xiaolin
Teachers: Professor Wang Huaxiang, Associate professor Kong Liang, Professor Li Jun
The Fourth Studio of the Printmaking Department
On the basis of respecting the traditional teaching, The Fourth Studio of the Printmaking Department of CAFA focuses on and researches the contemporary expression of printmaking language and the possibility of concept and media expansion of printmaking in contemporary cultural language. The studio’s teaching emphasizes the reference and use of traditional teaching achievements and resources and the Chinese and Western art history resources, and highlights the methods of revealing and discussing problems,. Meanwhile, students’ creative practice and creative experiment process are valued. In addition, the studio’s teaching attaches importance to cultivating students’ keen, accurate, timely and concise visual generalization of contemporary social reality and essence. Therefore, the goal of the studio’s teaching is not only to cultivate students’ artistic language expression and research ability, but also to develop students’ awareness of active concerning about the society and cultural development and to help students construct a lifelong learning concept in undergraduate study period and become a general talent with reasonable knowledge structure that meets the needs of today’s social and cultural development.
The studio’s teaching focuses on project research and training of writing runs through the teaching. Specific courses include: investigation and conversion of traditional cultural, comparison and cognition of print, comprehensive expression of the printmaking language, experimental space, free creation, graduation project, etc.
Investigation and Conversion of Traditional Culture
The purpose of the investigation is to use traditional Chinese culture as a platform to get in touch with more knowledge, add more information, and use our advantages to let students master the ability to receive, analyze, exchange, and process information. The course uses scientific methods to improve students’ ability of analysis and research based on personal interest. It teaches students to absorb and use traditional culture with right attitude, learn to draw useful parts from their own cultural system, and avoid conformity and randomness in consciousness. On this basis, students learn to seek possible ways of traditional and modern communication, prompting them to look farther and look for real “value” in the multi-dimensional reality and historical latitude and longitude.
Comparison and Cognition of Print
Through the practice of comparing various types of prints, students experience the uniqueness of the printmaking language, get familiar with and understand the basic concepts, principles and methods of each type of print, carefully study the specific expressive power of each type of print, and find their own language and vocabulary in the practice of comparison of printmaking.
With precondition of the previous courses, this course takes the approach of returning to oneself through setting proposition. Students clarify their concern by means of independent discussion and derive it through the matching medium. The purpose is to completely control the play of “ability and technique” to gain more attempts and accumulate more abundant formal language resources. Students get to practice any fantastic or absurd idea and try to use all kinds of feedback to prove whether their practice has as much commonality as possible.
This course is for the purpose of comprehensive training, guiding students to enter the stage of medium form of expression of art creation as an advance preparation for professional creation. Through in-depth study and practice, students are engaged in different degrees of personal experience and gain corresponding experience accumulation. Based on students’ self-judgment, teachers can better grasp the creation direction suitable for students through preliminary preparation and understanding. When students complete their art creations, they can directly or indirectly gain experience and feelings in this area, which is even more important for the overall establishment of their creative ability.
Graduation project is a comprehensive test of the knowledge students have acquired during their academic study period. It is also an opportunity for students to sort out the system of knowledge fragments and restructure various abilities. Students’ graduation project is often their beginning and orientation on their road of art in the future. Therefore, in this course, it is an important prerequisite to guide students to formulate their own art creation theme and direction in a specific cultural background. The course teaches them to use the knowledge and comprehensive abilities acquired over the past four years, learn to give full play to their strengths, strengthen their own advantages in creation to make up for their shortcomings, and ultimately control the creation of an art work with confidence.
Director of The Fourth Studio: Associate professor Li Fan
Teacher: Associate professor Wu Hong
The Fifth Studio of the Printmaking Department
The Fifth Studio of the Printmaking Department of CAFA was originally called the Illustration Studio, which is unique in the teaching of the Printmaking Department. Illustration is a category in plastic art, not a kind of painting. In 1979, the Printmaking Department of CAFA prepared to implement the supervisor studio system. Mr. Li Hua suggested to establish an illustration studio early on.
In 1980, the Printmaking Department of CAFA established Li Hua Studio, Wang Qi Studio and Illustration Studio. Mr. Wu Biduan is the director of the illustration studio.
After he retired in 1985, Mr. Sun Zixi took over as the director of the studio. The studio teachers included Gao Rongsheng and Chen Jinrong.
In the early 1990s, after Mr. Sun Zixi retired, Mr. Gao Rongsheng acted as the studio director.
In 2003, the Printmaking Department resumed the supervisor studio system, named in numbers, and the illustration studio was renamed “The Fifth Studio”. In 2007, Wu Jiang graduated from a postgraduate program and began to work as a teacher in the studio. In 2013, Mr. Gao Rongsheng retired. In 2015, based on the requirements for adjustment of the printmaking studios, the original fifth and sixth studios were merged and named “The Fifth Studio”. Wu Jiang was appointed as the director of the studio, and the teachers included Kang Jianfei, Tan Tan (external, master), and Wang Shuo (external, Ph. D.)
After decades of teaching practice, The Fifth Studio of the Printmaking Department of CAFA has established its teaching concept: to carry out art creation with scholar style by means of studying the creative thinking mode of illustration art combined with the necessary printmaking language and the related media .
The course is divided into three parts: illustration, printmaking and book art. The illustration part includes major foundation, literary illustration, and e-book illustration. In the printmaking section, “printmaking as a means of reproduction" is used as a starting point to explore the various possibilities of printmaking and its relationship with illustration art. As an effective carrier of illustration, books take a considerable proportion of the studio’s courses. This course includes manual bookbinding, the relationship between the form and content of book art, etc.
Graduation project is a kind of embodiment of students’ personal abilities. Based on what they have learned, The Fifth Studio pays more attention to the potential of students’ research and future expansion, starting from the concept of illustration art but not limited to this.
Director of The Fifth Studio：Associate professor Wu Jiang
Teachers: Professor Kang Jianfei, Professor Tan Tan
The Sixth Studio of the Printmaking Department
The main research and teaching direction of this studio is media archaeology. All art forms and the related media before today are part of the studio’s archaeological areas. Specifically, the studio’s goal is to start from the tradition and study what art is, why and how to do it.
The studio’s definition of the tradition includes but is not limited to the fine traditions and precious heritage of CAFA. Particular attention is paid to all kinds of contents, formats and craftsmanship that have been or are being forgotten, on the fringe of art and non-art, and once belonged to or are not yet within the scope of academic art, including the field of mass and cultural consumption. “Details and Greatness”, it is hoped that we can stick to the general goal and well conduct the daily tasks and let teaching benefit teachers as well as students and both make progress together. It is also hoped that, starting from the perspective of archaeology, we can think and study the meaning and infinite possibilities of art, open a new window for students, and thus cultivate an academic atmosphere of independent thinking, self-study and collaboration.
In order to realize the above ideology, the following courses are proposed:
1. History of Video Games
This course focuses on video games, including the brief history of commercial and household game machines. Centering on appreciation and introduction, this course requires students to actively participate and share their own gaming experience. After years of development, video games have developed a complete system and rich content, which has made an unignorable impact on the young generation and has become a mainstream culture that develops together with the film industry. The aim of this course is not to teach game design. Instead, it focuses on reflecting about the characteristics, development process and prospects of games as art forms, hoping to inspire students’ interest and confidence in using video games as medium.
2. Comic Strips
This course mainly introduces the most popular 64-carat black-and-white comic strips, presenting a preliminary introduction to their origin, history and craftsmanship with the existing books and teaching materials. As the most popular art form from the 1950s to1980s, comic strips have produced countless fine art works and enlightened and inspired a large number of young artists, playing an irreplaceable role in enriching people’s cultural life. Unfortunately, they were made out of date by newer media such as television. It is hoped that this course can arouse students’ interest in the history, content and technology of comic strips, enable them to discuss the similarities and differences between this art form and new popular cultures like cartoon picture books, and therefore open a door for active and new creations with comic strips and other forgotten art forms.
3. Model and Sand-table Making
This course emphasizes on the history and the existing status of the model (static) and sand-table. They have always been in people’s lives as museum patterns and popular cultures, but currently there are few cases defined as art forms. With the improvement of people’s living standards this year, the production scale and level of model have greatly developed, and there are also a number of individuals who make sand-table. Although three-demensional models and sand-tables are different from our well-known art categories including painting, sculpture, video and installation, they still have a lot in common, especially with movie and drama. his course hopes to stimulate students’ interest in model and sand-table so that they are able to actively integrate the three-dimensional medium and handcrafts as the medium of learning and creation and get rid of the limitation of simply thinking with plane dimension and computer.
4. Figure Drawing
Given undergraduate students’ relatively weak basis in plastic arts, the studio believes that it is necessary to arrange a three-week Figure Drawing course every semester in the third and fourth grades. This course plans to center on short-term assignments. Through studying the seemingly familiar figure drawing, the purpose is to give students opportunities to rethink various issues including the understanding of art, the relationship between tradition and the modern time, and the distance between ideas and ability in plastic arts, etc. In this way, students can accumulate energy for future learning.
5. Video and Music Creation Basics
Nowadays, as social media and media arts are developing prosperously, students are eager to learn how to make videos and music. This course aims to present the relationship between music and painting, teach the basic process from photography to editing as well as the basic process of music and sound effect production. Students are guided to finish a complete work and lay the foundation for future creation with media technology.
Director of The Sixth Studio: Professor Feng Mengbo
Teacher: Professor Liu Liping