Commonplace Treasure (PAI4406.01)

Annette Lawrence

A course built around finding or recognizing the value, beauty, poetry, and remarkable power in mundane everyday occurrences, objects, and ephemera. Students will be encouraged to slow down and notice resources that they ordinarily rush by. Class exercises will include list making, photography, journaling, sketching, collecting and editing materials for paintings. The goal of the course is to use attention to transform the commonplace into treasure. We will use references to Dada, Arte Povera, Mono-ha, The Gee’s Bend Quilters, Jasper Johns, and Robert Rauschenberg for historical grounding. Assignments will be supported by discussions about works by Marcel Duchamp, Joseph Cornell, David Hammons, Betye Saar, Tom Friedman, Mark Bradford, Tara Donavon, and Liliana Porter among others. Note: This course serves as a location within which to pursue Advanced Work as it is described by the Plan process.

Learning Outcomes:

Delivery Method: Fully in-person
Prerequisites: Interested students should send an email to with Commonplace Treasure in the subject line outlining their experience level, their interest in the course, their research interests, and how this course relates to their Plan of study.
Course Level: 4000-level
Credits: 4
F 8:30AM - 12:10PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 14
Course Frequency: One time only

Categories: Areas of Study , Fully In-Person , Painting
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