Research & Art

Spring 2021 UWAS Courses

University-Wide Art Studies (UWAS) offers all Aalto students an opportunity to explore art-based practices and processes beyond disciplinary boundaries. Its course portfolio consists of thematically focused and carefully curated courses where art, design, and architecture facilitate transdisciplinary encounters between students from various backgrounds. Basing its curriculum in experimentation, curiosity, and creativity, UWAS invites both students and teachers to explore the world from multiple angles and learn from each other.

In academic year 2020-21, UWAS courses are organized under six thematic categories:

Anthropocene courses address issues such as global warming, sustainability, resources, and energy.

Actions courses deal with different aspects of making and creating in arts, design, and architecture, and explore their connections to practices in other fields.

Reflections courses offer theoretical and critical approaches to futures and utopias, identity and identities, and global and local ecosystems.

Manifestations courses deal with communication, visualization, presentation, and representation of information, how is it applied, and how to understand its impacts.

Collaborations courses explore participatory and cooperative practices in arts, design, and architecture, and their links to other fields.

Tensions courses explore traditions, paradigms, and histories between disciplines, and how they are expressed and reflected upon today.

UWAS also participates in organizing MathArts minor together with the Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis.

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hyrrä (picture by Anne Kinnunen)
photo by Anne Kinnunen

UWAS-C0004 Miten idea materialisoituu?

5 ECTS
Periodi III
Inka Nieminen
Actions

Kurssilla perehdytään oppilaan omien ideoiden prosessoimiseen ja esittämiseen kuvanveiston menetelmillä. Kurssi tarjoaa opiskelijalle mahdollisuuden kehittää omaa luovaa ajattelua ja oppia toteuttamaan ideansa konkreettisena teoksena. Päätavoitteena on taiteen monialaisuuden löytäminen ja ympäristön havainnoinnin kehittäminen.

UWAS-C0055 Design for the Posthuman Era

3 ECTS
Period III
Eva Durall, Jana Pejoska
Reflections

Different ideas of the role of humanity in environmental and socio-technical spheres provide the basis from which this course will reflect on current and future approaches to technological design. The course will investigate posthumanism, transhumanism, system and design thinking methods as theoretical tools to approach these questions, and practical tools and methods will also be introduced for hands-on activities in designing posthuman technological systems.

UWAS-C0057 Introduction to Creativity and the Creative Process

3 ECTS
Period III
Elizabeth Morney, Raija Talvio
Reflections

The students will get a better understanding on how to use creativity in one’s own work, understanding the definition of creativity and being acquainted to relevant literature on creativity. The course is both theoretical and practical. The aim of the course is to explore the creative process mainly from the point of view of audiovisual production and screenwriting, but also on a more general level through creativity theories.

UWAS-C0062 Storytelling in the Time of Global Warming

3 ECTS
Period III
Kevin McCarthy
Anthropocene

If you want to engage people in a lasting way, especially on an emotional level, you need to tell them an unforgettable story. This course will explore nature as a source of conflict, a source of epiphany and a source of suspense. By dissecting great stories about nature, and great stories that use nature in a story-significant way, students will learn how to become better storytellers themselves.

UWAS-C0063 Observing Silence

3 ECTS
Period III
Annika Sohlman
Reflections

What if one should observe silence like one observes the weather? The aim of the course is to understand the diversity of silence through contemporary discussions and transdisciplinary observations. During the course, the students will keep a logbook similar to a weather book in order to document their observations connected to silence. For the final project, the logbooks of the students are assembled together into a shared publication.

UWAS-C0065 Movement in Art and Design

3 ECTS
Period III
Eun Young Park
Actions

The goal of this course is to make students familiar with basic kinetic/robotic movement with hands-on exercises and be able to apply what they learn to their own art and design projects. This course will benefit both art and design students; art students by lowering the barrier to kinetic/robotic design; science and engineering students by providing opportunities to explore technologies from a creative perspective.

UWAS-C0054 Simulating the Post-Disaster

3 ECTS
Period III
Gloria Lauterbach
Reflections

The course looks at pivotal historical climate events as well as the current climate crisis, investigating the dynamic possible role of design in a simulated human and non-human future. Using approaches from Critical Design, the course results in the creation of one potential post-disaster scenario.

UWAS-C0036 Game Design and Production

6 ECTS
Periods III-IV
Arash Sammander
Actions

Students gain a basic understanding of the principles and processes of game design and production. The course consists of lectures and project work. Lectures focus more on principles of game design, while a small game project guides the students through the development process of a game.

UWAS-C0050 3D Prototyping in Context of Creative Practice

3 ECTS
Period IV
Ashish Mohite
Actions

Students will look at art and design practice and how adopting digital fabrication technologies and working with materials in new ways can create new business opportunities and potentials. As case studies, students will examine the practices of artist such as Tomas Saraceno, Olafur Elisson and Anish Kapoor and how their adoption of new materials and technologies have helped them realise their visions.

UWAS-C0059 Film, Work and the Anthropocene

5 ECTS
Period IV
Ines Peixoto, Tiina Taipale
Anthropocene

The course uses films to investigate the relations between work and the Anthropocene, and explores how films portray and construct social reality. The course also looks at the social developments related to work and the Anthropocene.

UWAS-C0066 Exploring Consumerism in Contemporary Society

3 ECTS
Period IV
Usva Seregina
Reflections

This course explores the idea of the consumer society and the role of consumption in contemporary culture, engaging and deconstructing power structures connected to consumerism. Students will learn to reflect on their own engagement in consumption and how this can be critically approached on both an individual and professional level.

UWAS-C0069 The Right to the City

3 ECTS
Period IV
Michail Galanakis
Actions

The course aims to create a space to challenge preconceived ideas about the nature of urban public space, and to investigate the many ways public spaces could be designed and managed to empower communities.

UWAS-L0001 UWAS Doctoral Workshop: Participatory Practices and Social Change

3 ECTS
Period IV
Alejandro Pedregal
Tensions

Students will learn how different participatory experiences in arts and design have engaged with scientific and technical disciplines in search of social change. They will also learn how these practices have enriched site-specific debates in their particular environments, springing critical discussions on tensions between local and global politics, economics and culture.

UWAS-C0029 Design and Culture

3 ECTS
Periods IV
Paola Cabrera
Tensions

The course offers students diverse insights into the interrelationships between design practices, design artifacts, design policies, consumption, culture and cultural action. Regardless of the particular discipline of the students, and also because of the variety of disciplines, the course components provide a particular platform for exchanging views and learning from each other.

UWAS-C0038 Expanding Visualization

5 ECTS
Periods IV-V
Tim Smith
Manifestations

Students will explore contemporary and experimental uses of digital visual media through art-making, social media sharing, readings, lectures, demonstrations, discussions, critiques and writing. Much of this discussion, reflection, and experimentation will particularly focus on issues and questions of inequality, identity, power, representation, and ideology throughout global digital visual cultures.

UWAS-C0045 AV Club: Thinking and Doing Moving Images

5 ECTS
Periods IV-V
Lauri Linna
Actions

Students will learn how moving image is used in the contemporary world in different contexts, including YouTube videos, Snapchat, Skype-calls, commercials, TV, films, video art, installations, and scientific visualizations, as well as gain basic knowledge about working with moving image or can develop their prior skills further.

UWAS-C0002 On Site - Island Workshop

3 ECTS
Period V
Juuso Tervo
Collaborations

The workshop takes place on Örö Island in the Turku archipelago, which provides a fruitful atmosphere for transdisciplinary work. The students will explore artistic questions and methods, such as multi-sensorial practices, metaphorical thinking, perception, and representation. The idea of the workshop is to encourage students to pay attention to things that are easily left unnoticed, whether in everyday life or in one's studies.

UWAS-C0026 Innovative Approach to Circular Economy

5 ECTS
Period V
Riikka Mäkikoskela
Anthropocene

The course will look at the impact that contemporary art has in the context of the circular economy. The student understands the possibilities of innovative and artistic methods in creating cultural change, and can evaluate their social impact in the context of the circular economy.

UWAS-C0032 Under Pressure

5 ECTS
Period V
Denise Ziegler
Manifestations

Students will learn to understand and study their environment through artistic and experimental approaches, and to put these approaches into the perspective of their own fields of studies and practices. The emphasis of the course will be on the mechanism of pressure systems in our urban environment, and on the concrete as well as the circumstantial influence they have on our actions.

UWAS-C0052 Integrated Design Thinking

3 ECTS
Period V
Oscar Person
Actions

The course provides students with an introduction to design, and the rise of design thinking in innovation. The goal is to help students find their own ways of adopting more designerly work practices. Through group work, in-class discussions and interviews with professionals, students are tasked to uncover the scope of design and designers’ work in their own discipline; in visualizing their findings, students are introduced to the fundamentals of graphic design and visual communication.

UWAS-C0060 Gender and Technology

3 ECTS
Period V
Louna Hakkarainen
Reflections

The course is a space for collaborative learning and a facilitated reading group, which helps students to develop critical skills for analyzing science, technologies and the process of design through a gendered lens as well as their own practice. The course explores topics such as technology as culture, gendered technology, cyberfemism and technofeminism.

UWAS-C0061 Handmade and Reflected

5 ECTS
Period V
Krista Kosonen, Milla Vaahtera
Actions

The focus of the course is to make and experiments by hand, explore creativity and get to know the origins of materials via excursions to studios and nature. Attending the course doesn’t require any previous experience on design or knowledge of the materials. The course includes studio visits and experimenting with techniques such as fresh wood whittling and glassblowing. The course focuses on pressure-free creativity and encourages a more intuitive way of working, giving space for mistakes.

UWAS-C0071 Horses and Built Environment

3 ECTS
Period V
Eero Yli-Vakkuri, Pietari Kylmälä
Actions

Participants will learn basic skills needed to continue working with horses and gain an insight to contemporary equestrian culture. While learning practical skills, participants will develop an understanding of the complex field of posthumanism and learn to recognize how humancentric modes of design affect non-humans. The course will provide tools for reading build environments using observational techniques which evoke sentiments of attachment and solidarity.

 

 

 

Fall 2020 UWAS Courses
University-Wide Art Studies
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