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American Ideas in Three Artist Collectives

by
Emily Faxon


Contents of Curriculum Unit 11.03.02:

To Guide Entry


Introduction

This research and unit of instruction connect art history and art-making to Americansup> 1/sup> cultural history and citizenship; the lessons are intended for a high school photography class. By providing historical background and classroom experiences of artistic collaboration and participation in an artist collective, I hope to instill a sense of their challenges and rewards, and to generate student thinking and dialogue about the influence of democracy and the importance of participation in the making of American culture.

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Background

Like many photography teachers, I spend a good deal of time teaching for student understanding of photographic mechanics and for acquisition of technical skills. I am fortunate to work in a photography classroom equipped with both a traditional and a digital darkroom. I enjoy watching students experience "old-school" darkroom magic. When students witness the effects of light and chemistry on the film negative and paper positive, they learn what the camera actually does. The digital resources enable students to work with today's technology, its convenience and power, and all the possibilities afforded by one's imagination, photographic software, and a connection to the internet.

As in any other studio art class, it is very important that students understand that images make meaning through both their subject matter and formal attributes, and that the history of art is a complex web of narrative/philosophy/poetry/argument of which students become a part as soon as they start making pictures. Ideally, making art in America is a democratic act! Therefore, the educated image-maker must learn something about this history of images.

In a studio class, there is no one perfect place to begin the history of photography. I choose historical or contemporary examples based on my sense of their relevance to the lesson. For example, a beginning-of-the-year exercise in making photograms might suggest images of 19th century botanical cyanotypes, the examples of Bauhaus instructor Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, and a print made by a student in last year's class. The progress of photography is complex. My hope is that diverse historical and contemporary examples will inspire students to mine their own capacity for inspiration and original expression.

In addition, my art department colleagues and I have engaged with the need to teach writing across the curriculum. By teaching students how to observe, describe, analyze and evaluate images, the students' own and others, we give them practice ordering their thoughts. Through writing, students gain a better understanding of their own artwork and its place in the world of images.

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Rationale and Objectives

Even with its richness in technique, design, art history, and self-expression, I have sometimes felt that studio art is a peculiar cul-de-sac in comprehensive secondary education. Photographs, drawings and other art production may be used as instructional tools across the curriculum, but it seems more difficult to integrate outside subject matter into an art class while still keeping art first and foremost. It's worthwhile to try, because studio art, partitioned as a discrete discipline, may not serve well the majority of our students, who, as adults, will not be practitioners of art nor regular museum-goers.sup>

/sup>

This unit of instruction is an experiment in connecting art historical content to American political and cultural history, particularly to American ideals. I hope that these connections, which will be explored in the classroom through illustrated lecture, class discussion, group activities, and individual assignments, will make the images and art ideas more meaningful and memorable, and that the content will enhance students' understanding of and investment in our common American culture.

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American Ideas

This section considers three themes that help describe the origin, progress, and ideals of the United States of America. The Revolution and The Manifesto; Self-Government and the Collective; Freedom and Individualism: these themes are reflected in the origins and histories of the artist collectives discussed in the following section.

The Revolution and The Manifesto

The Declaration of Independence, our founding document, with its proud language and long list of signers, evokes a sense of solidarity and just purpose. At the same time, it suggests how difficult it is to unify individuals and groups with diverse interests. While famously expressing the right of "all men" to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness," the Declaration is not a treatise on the best conditions for the pursuit of happiness but, mostly, a catalog of insults caused by British rule of the American colonies.sup> 2/sup>sup> /sup>The Declaration demonstrates how much easier it is to consolidate a collective around specific complaints than to define its specific common goals. Nevertheless, the formality of creating a document to state a revolution's purpose, with signatures attached, demands a commitment on the part of the revolutionaries. The Declaration calls for attention from the world--"a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation"sup> 3/sup>--and for a place in history for the United States of America.

Self-Government and the Collective

Cooperation for survival and collectivity had been a way of life in colonial America. Settlers cooperated to build houses, fences, and barns. Mutual aid events to clear land, pare apples, make quilts, or perform other large tasks served to solidify the community of settlers.sup> 4/sup>sup>

/sup>

In 1835, Alexis de Tocqueville observed that American government occurred first at the local level, echoing a natural, "spontaneous" pattern of civilization whereby people tend to settle together in groups: "[t]he local institutions of New England," he wrote, "...owe their strength not only to law but even more to custom."sup> 5/sup> As opposed to European traditions of rigid hierarchy and strong central government, the strength of the United States of America comes from the practice of being a voluntary collective. Tocqueville wrote,

The political associations that exist in the United States are only a single feature in the midst of the immense assemblage of associations in that country. Americans of all ages, all conditions, and all dispositions constantly form associations. They have not only commercial and manufacturing companies, in which all take part, but associations of a thousand other kinds...sup> 6/sup>sup>

/sup>sup>

/sup>In 1731 in Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin organized fifty of his neighbors and friends to start the first subscription library in America. Each paid forty shillings to start the collection. In 1736, Franklin and four friends organized the first volunteer fire fighting company, which became a prototype for many others in the new land.sup> 7/sup> In 1783, the Preseverance Benefit and Mutual Aid Association, founded in New Orleans, was the first recorded benevolent association among free blacks. The Free African Society (FAS) of Philadelphia was "particularly noted for its work with victims of yellow fever in the epidemic of 1793."sup> 8/sup> It seems a part of American character and culture for groups of all kinds to form institutions to formally engage their communities.

As early as the 1830s, as part of the nascent labor movement in the United States, skilled craftsmen and artisans formed cooperatives. In 1836, the National Trades' Union supported cooperatives as an alternative to strikes against employers over wages and working conditions.sup> 9/sup> Later, after the Civil War, deflation and the growing American market increased competition among manufacturers.sup> 1/sup>sup> 0/sup>sup>

/sup>sup>

/sup>Since traditional methods of production persisted well into the 1870s and the introduction of machinery did not necessarily foster economies of scale, small factories could be as, or more efficient than larger ones. If the capital requirements remained low enough, cooperators could enter a market and compete successfully...[T]heir objectives had as much to do with stability and efforts to create community [as]...with a will to preserve craft skills.sup> 1/sup>sup> 1/sup>

In the 1860s and early 1870s, many American artisan cooperatives (such as shoemakers, carpenters, machinists, clothing workers, cigar makers, and printers) modeled themselves after a British weavers' cooperative called Rochdale, in which individual members were entitled to one vote, bought shares and earned a fixed dividend of 5% or less on their investment. These cooperatives were financially stable, and they were able to price their goods at market rates and return profits to their members.sup> 1/sup>sup> 2/sup> Cooperatives were democratic associations that provided practical benefit to artisans: helping perpetuate threatened handcraft skills; allowing artisans to create a market presence with the capital power of a group; and thereby making possible a livelihood through free labor.

Eliminating "wage slavery" was an important principle of utopian socialist societies that formed before the Civil War.

Genuine freedom required the abolition of private property, thereby eliminating the distinction between employer and employee...[For some Americans,] joining a community like New Harmony, Brook Farm, or Oneida offered the way to personal freedom through rejection of the market economy."sup> 1/sup>sup> 3/sup>

By eliminating property rights, these experimental communities expressed an intention to create a system that was both free and equal for their inhabitants, but many utopian communities "practiced great austerity while adhering to exacting rules laid down by a charismatic religious or secular leader."sup> 1/sup>sup> 4/sup> In practice, these un-democratic collectives were neither free nor equal. Because most Americans, then as now, viewed property as the basis of liberty, the appeal of these communities was limited. Still, the utopian socialist ideals of being free to live outside an oppressive wage system and of doing work that, in some ways, seems removed from the demands of the common marketplace are found in the dream of being an independent fine artist in America in the twentieth century.

Freedom and Individualism

The Revolution's promise of freedom in America is complicated by conflicting interpretations of freedom and the question of who is promised to enjoy it. The Puritan settlers of colonial Massachusetts believed in a spiritual definition of freedom. John Winthrop, the colony's governor, distinguished sharply between "natural liberty," which suggested "a liberty to evil," and "moral liberty...a liberty to do only what is good."sup> 1/sup>sup> 5/sup>

Because one was expected to direct one's beliefs and behavior to comply with rigid community standards, Puritan liberty hardly resembles the kind of individual latitude of action and expression that today most would call freedom.

In colonial times, most commentators shared the view that independent means were a qualification for freedom, including the right to vote.sup> 1/sup>sup> 6/sup> The logic of this view is that persons who did not control their own lives--servants, enslaved persons, women, and children--were not capable of making knowledgeable, independent decisions about their government. Property, therefore, was a prerequisite of freedom.sup> 1/sup>sup> 7/sup>

The Revolution, however, was such a powerful repudiation of the traditional structure and apportionment of power that "many Americans also rejected the very idea of human inequality and the society of privilege, patronage, [aristocracy]...and fixed status...

In the egalitarian atmosphere of revolutionary America, long-accepted relations of dependency and forms of unfreedom suddenly appeared illegitimate. Abigail Adams's plea to her husband to "remember the ladies," her reminder that women, no less than men, ought not to be "bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation," is widely remembered today.sup> 1/sup>sup> 8/sup>

After the Civil War, the importance of property to freedom reasserted itself. Lincoln's successor Andrew Jackson gave white Southerners the right to control the terms of Reconstruction, and they chose to preserve plantation culture: former slaves were "free, but free only to labor."sup> 1/sup>sup> 9/sup>sup> /sup>During Reconstruction, the dominant understanding of economic freedom was "as self-ownership and the right to compete in the labor market, rather than propertied independence."sup> 2/sup>sup> 0/sup> A free citizen could be a dependent laborer--a "juxtaposition of political equality and economic inequality...[which has become] the American way."sup> 2/sup>sup> 1/sup> The conflict of these two circumstances corresponds to the key motive for American artists to form collectives in the 20th century: they have the freedom to express themselves but not the cultural status to have their work seen as fine art.

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Three American Artist Collectives

The three 20sup> t/sup>sup> h/sup>-century American artist collectives in this study--Group f. 64, Fluxus, and Guerrilla Girls--were founded on explicit rejection of existing cultural biases and commercial constraints. Despite the inherent individualism of contemporary art practice, the members of each of these collectives sought to consolidate their power in the face of unfriendly institutions, and in each case, defined their union through manifestos, public acts or exhibitions, and/or collective works of art.

This section will examine the ways in which each collective aligns with the three American themes described in the previous section. It is apparent that the achievements and longevity of each group were (are) connected to the establishment of strong personal and intellectual connections among group members; to the group's capacity to respond constructively to internal dissent; and to the relevance of the group's mission when the natural inclination of individual members is to pursue their own work.

Group f. 64

Group f. 64 was formed in 1932, a collective of American photographers of the west coast who rejected the popular pictorialist photographic techniques of the time in favor of a "pure" photography whose aesthetics were defined by the technical capacity of the best cameras and lenses. The group's name derived from the highest lens aperture setting, which yielded the greatest depth of field (sharpest focus). These photographers wanted the art world to recognize the unique capacity of the camera to render the real world with minute precision--and the beauty of that precision--so that photography would be viewed, as much as painting, as an authentic medium of fine art. Some notable members of the group were Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, and Edward Weston.

The Revolution and The Manifesto

Within 15 years after the first known photograph was made by Frenchman Joseph Nicéphore Niépce in 1824,sup> 2/sup>sup> 2/sup> the daguerreotype process made photography commercially viable.sup> 2/sup>sup> 3/sup> Photographs from the nineteenth century have a special fascination: they are our first glimpse of the way people of the past really looked. In the United States, two major events first attracted photographers out of their portrait studios and into the "real world": the Civil War and exploration of and expansion into the American West.sup> 2/sup>sup> 4/sup>

Photography was visually compelling, but few people at the time considered photographs fine art. Photography was considered a mechanical process, nothing more. In 1900, Eastman Kodak introduced the Brownie camera, which cost only $1.00. The sales pitch was, "You push the button, we do the rest."sup> /sup>The Brownie made photography accessible to the middle class, and suddenly photographs were everywhere.sup> 2/sup>sup> 5/sup> In the early 20th century, the photograph seemed a world away from fine art.

Most serious photographers looked to the language of painting to make photographs that looked like art. These photographers chose what they felt were exalted subjects--mythological or historical characters, sentimental archetypes, abstract ideas, or emotional states--and interpreted them through the use of posed actors, dramatic lighting, and technical practices that obscured the precision of the photograph. This photographic style was called pictorialism. Pictorialist photographers worked with soft focus, and might use textured photo papers, chemical toners, or hand-coloring to heighten the sense of drama or obscure unwanted detail.sup> 2/sup>sup> 6/sup> The era of pictorialist photography began in approximately 1885 and became the dominant language of photographic art well into the 20th century.

Although modernist abstraction had touched the photographic world in the work of New York photographer Paul Strand by 1915 and the advertising photographs of Charles Sheeler in the 1920s, most museums, galleries, and camera clubs recognized only the pictorialist style as the way photographic art was supposed to look. California photographer Edward Weston had worked in the pictorialist style, but he thoroughly rejected it at least eight years prior to the formation of Group f. 64. In fact, he scraped clean his 8x10" glass negatives to destroy his early work.sup> 2/sup>sup> 7/sup>

In his daybooks, Weston was quite clear about his thoughts on the pictorialist style:

"...seeing some unusually awful reproductions in [an issue of Camera Craft magazine]...with a laudatory article by the editor, I spent an hour writing him my mind. These cheap abortions which need no description other than their titles, "Pray," "Greek Slave," "Orphans," "Unlucky Day," have nothing to do with Art, nor Life, nor Photography. So I not very gently explained. But why did I waste my time? I know the Editor's policy...: backing my work and opinions, his publication would fail! I am in a mood to stir things up!sup> 2/sup>sup> 8/sup>

Weston felt that photography had "the validity of a new expression, without tradition or conventions...[and] the strength of pioneering."sup> 2/sup>sup> 9/sup> His new, sharp-focus style felt to him to be a new American art, which was in opposition to everything European and everything before World War I.sup> 3/sup>sup> 0/sup> In 1930, he wrote, "To photograph a rock, have it look like a rock, but be more than a rock. Significant representation--not reinterpretation."sup> 3/sup>sup> 1/sup>

But Edward Weston was a maverick; it wasn't in his nature to organize a group of like-minded photographers. Group f. 64 was conceived by young photographers Willard Van Dyke and Preston Holder, who were students at the University of California at Berkeley. Van Dyke knew Edward Weston and knew that photographer/gallery owner Alfred Stieglitz had been patronizing to Weston when Weston went to New York in 1922. Van Dyke felt that Edward Weston's photographs were superior to those of Stieglitz's protégé Paul Strand.sup> 3/sup>sup> 2/sup>sup> /sup>Van Dyke had seen Imogen Cunningham's plant forms, Ansel Adams's photographs of the Sierra and the work of several like-minded local photographers. At their first gathering, at the house of (father and daughter) John Paul and Mary Jeannette Edwards at 683 Brockhurst Street in Oakland, California, they decided the name for their group, based on the very small lens aperture setting. The group liked the logic of the name, as well as the way it sounded and looked.sup> 3/sup>sup> 3/sup>

The Group f. 64 Manifesto was apparently written as an explanation for a museum audience. It was posted at the first exhibition of the group's work at the M. H. de Young Memorial Museum in San Francisco, November 15-December 31, 1932. The manifesto explains the meaning of the group's name and the desire of the group to show what it considers to be the "best contemporary photography of the West," of its members and other like-minded photographers. It continues, in part:

Group F. 64...will show no work at any time that does not conform to its standards of pure photography. Pure photography is defined as possessing no qualities of technic, composition or idea, derivative of any other art-form. The production of the "Pictorialists," on the other hand, indicates a devotion to principles of art which are directly related to painting and the graphic arts….The members of Group F. 64 believe that Photography, as an art-form,...must always remain independent of ideological conventions of art and aesthetics that are reminiscent of a period and culture antedating the growth of the medium itself….The Group...is favorable towards establishing itself as a Forum of Modern Photography.sup> 3/sup>sup> 4/sup>

The Group f. 64 revolution tried to establish an absolutely new way of seeing photography as fine art. The manifesto makes clear what the group opposes ("Pictorialism") and draws a broad but ambitious outline for what the group might become: "a Forum of Modern Photography".

Self-Government and The Collective

As stated in their manifesto, Group f. 64 was a somewhat open organization. They were interested in the work of like-minded photographers, and unusual for the time, included several women photographers in their number; the acceptance of women may be attributable to an awakened attitude towards the "New Woman" who emerged after the battles for the right to work and the right to vote.sup> 3/sup>sup> 5/sup> Some members of Group f. 64 were more active in exhibitions or as spokespersons than others. In all, eleven photographers were considered members at some time in its existence: Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, John Paul Edwards, Preston Holder, Consuelo Kanaga, Alma Lavenson, Sonya Noskowiak, Henry Swift, Willard Van Dyke, Brett Weston, and Edward Weston.sup> 3/sup>sup> 6/sup>

If Willard Van Dyke, with his youthful energy and fierce dogmatism about "pure photography" had been the catalyst for the group's formation, Edward Weston was certainly its spiritual leader. His work first defined the f. 64 aesthetic: sharp focus, filtered natural light, and the study of abstract form and surface detail in organic or natural subject matter. His prints were contact prints from 8x10" negatives. Ansel Adams, age 30 when the group was founded, was more mature than Van Dyke and more sociable than Weston; given a thoughtful, analytical nature, he probably had the best sense of the group's achievements and limitations. In 1935, he wrote:

I consider the production of Group F 64 as definitely transitional in character. I define transitional in regard to point-of-view--aesthetic and social. I believe we have obtained a fairly final expression of mechanical technique (in reference to the present development of the medium), and I think our next step should be the relation of this technique to a more thorough and inclusive aesthetic expression.sup> 3/sup>sup> 7/sup>

While pictorialist photographer William Mortensen was one of several of the old guard who criticized the work of Group f. 64 as nothing more than "finger exercises...[that do not] merit artistic consideration,"sup> 3/sup>sup> 8/sup> Ansel Adams was willing to concede:

Our work has been basically experimental. In our desire to attain a pure expression in our medium, we have made powerful attacks in various directions, stressing objective, abstract, and socially significant tendencies. These phases of our work should now be taken from the laboratory...and functionally applied....

Group F 64 has become an institution in the mind of the photographic public...and our chief task at present will be to keep the prestige we have developed and at the same time expand in fresh and stimulating directions.sup> 3/sup>sup> 9/sup>

With reference to "socially significant tendencies," Group f. 64 member Consuelo Kanaga focused on portraits of African-American subjects. One of her images portrayed a black male hand gently holding a white female hand. About this image and others, Adams was willing to criticize Kanaga's work in a public statement:

Of late she has become involved in social-significances, which I frankly believe to be detrimental to the fulfillment of her art....The philosophic properties of subject material are better suggested in subtle aesthetic intention rather than in ... obvious propagandic [sic] treatment.sup> 4/sup>sup> 0/sup>

The group's manifesto had suggested inclusion and openness, but it also allowed for judgment and possible exclusion. Any hint of sentimentality or propaganda was suspect.

Adams was more sympathetic with the objective-seeming FSA work of Dorothea Lange, who was something of a satellite member of Group f. 64; Lange also participated in exhibitions at 683 Brockhurst, which Mary Jeannette Edwards had made into a salon and gallery for the f. 64 style of photography.

One of the most important weaknesses of the collective was the unequal status of its members. After achieving some notoriety for Group f. 64 and its mission through frequent articles, editorials, and letters in photographic journals, the higher status members had much to gain by separating themselves from the beginners. The younger, less well-known members benefitted from their connection to the more celebrated ones, particularly to Edward Weston.sup> 4/sup>sup> 1/sup> Today, the weakness caused by inequality of members of a collective is seen in the fraying solidarity of labor unions, when in contract negotiations, they agree to accept "grandfather clauses", different treatment of members based on date of hire. If members of a collective do not share a common purpose or equal benefit from their association, its survival may be threatened.

Freedom and Individualism

As Ansel Adams had said, Group f. 64 was transitional in nature and proved temporary. The worsening Depression affected artists and photographers who were already living on few sales and commissions. Group f. 64 disintegrated after 1935, as members moved away from the San Francisco Bay Area. Edward Weston moved to Santa Barbara and Willard Van Dyke moved to New York City to pursue a career in motion pictures. Weston later received the first Guggenheim fellowship ever awarded to a photographer. Ansel Adams worked in his studio in Yosemite, and continued to make many memorable photos of the Yosemite Valley and other wild places. In his Yosemite studio, he developed many of Dorothea Lange's Farm Security Administration negatives, despite the FSA policy that photographers send their film to Washington for processing.sup> 4/sup>sup> 2/sup>

Many of the women photographers of Group f. 64 were forgotten until much later in their lives. Historian Therese Thau Heyman writes:

These remarkable women were acknowledged as peers by their Group f. 64 male contemporaries. Only later did a silence come to surround their work--a silence created by exhibition curators, art dealers, and photographic historians in the 1950s. Although Lavenson and Cunningham continued to live and photograph in the Bay Area, they were not singled out for solo shows until their careers were validated by their remarkably long lives. As Cunningham noted, she and other women photographers in their fifties were invisible; only when she reached seventy did she become a celebrity.sup> 4/sup>sup> 3/sup>

Group f. 64 was probably destined to be a short-lived association. Its members were highly independent fine artists working in a brand new way, in a medium that was still considered a bit suspect for being commercial and also a bit too much the realm of the amateur. As Adams had felt, members' interests were diverse, but the shared character of the group's images--mostly close-up, still lifes and portraits, shot as studies of tonal abstraction and surface texture--had their limitations. In 1958, Adams said of Group f. 64, "It accomplished its purpose and there was no need for repetition. In fact, continuation might well have reduced its effectiveness...It is good that it didn't last long enough to become a cult."sup> 4/sup>sup> 4/sup> Photography curator and historian Beaumont Newhall noted that "their debates in the press and their other statements gave the impression that the parameters of their aesthetic were narrow in relation to the possibilities for creative photography."sup> 4/sup>sup> 5/sup>

Critics came to question the premise of the work of Group f.64. In the Depression era, it seemed wrong that their photography was concerned only with aesthetics and not with economic or social problems.sup> 4/sup>sup> 6/sup> The cultural mantle of "straight photography" was passed to the photographers of the FSA, like Dorothea Lange, whose work used sharp-focused realism but who placed a greater importance on social documentation and, in most cases, a lesser emphasis on lofty standards of craftsmanship or technique.

Fluxus

Fluxus, started in 1961, was (is) a loosely-strung collective of musicians and conceptual artists, the principle organizer of whom was George Maciunas. Maciunas's Fluxus Manifesto calls artists to "purge the world of bourgeois sickness, 'intellectual', professional & commercialized culture."sup> 4/sup>sup> 7/sup> Sputnik notwithstanding, the Fluxus movement coincided with the apex of American confidence and consumer culture, and refuted it, calling for an anti-materialist art that resists being a consumable product. The products of Fluxus, then, are the ephemera of idea art--including photographic records of installations and performances--and art objects disguised as mundane ones--stamps, notecards, boxes of seemingly random stuff, posters, and signs. In addition to George Maciunas, some notable members of the group were Yoko Ono, George Brecht, Nam June Paik, Alison Knowles, Dick Higgins, Emmett Williams, and Ben Vautier.

The Revolution and The Manifesto

Fluxus--the movement, the collective--was founded by Jurgis Maciunas. His difficult childhood is a key to his character, and knowing a bit about his character is helpful to understanding the origins of Fluxus. Jurgis was born in Kaunas, Lithuania in 1931; his mother was an opera singer and a dancer. As a 3-year-old boy he contracted tuberculosis and was placed in a sanatorium for three months. He was often ill, and much of his childhood was spent away from his parents, in the home of another family or in hospitals. He became particularly afraid of losing his mother and, later, as an adult, avoided close relations with women so that he could persuade his widowed mother to live with him. In 1944, the family fled the advancing Soviet Army to the American-occupied zone of Germany. In 1948, the Maciunas family moved to the United States and settled in Long Island.sup> 4/sup>sup> 8/sup>

Jurgis was a dedicated student with a range of artistic and art historical interests. From 1949-1952, he studied fine art, graphic art, and architecture at the Cooper Union, New York. From 1952-1954, he studied architecture and musicology at the Carnegie Institute of Technology, Pittsburgh; and from 1955-1960, he studied European and Siberian art of the time of the early medieval migrations at New York University.sup> 4/sup>sup> 9/sup> His largest work of scholarship, never finished, was a detailed diagram of art history of all cultures and epochs, which was continually undergoing revision and amplification.sup> 5/sup>sup> 0/sup>

In the winter of 1960-61, Maciunas met some of the young artists and composers grouped around avant-garde composer John Cage and offered to publish their work in his magazine called Fluxus. When Jurgis also got involved with Communist sympathizers, the Lithuanian Society, which had been intending to finance Fluxus magazine originally, pulled out, feeling that they had been lucky to escape Communism to New York in the first place.sup> 5/sup>sup> 1/sup> At that point, Jurgis changed his first name to George. Throughout his life, Maciunas would be dogged by debt and a victim of his own ill-conceived schemes to make money.

The original Fluxus manifesto was George Maciunas's creation, but he was capturing a spirit of experimentation that was invigorating the work of young artists in New York and Europe. He was interested in and inspired by them, and he wanted to create an overarching theory of the art and performance he was witnessing. Maciunas's enthusiasm and humor, his ideas for Fluxus projects, and his desire to help stage other artists' work attracted young artists and musicians to the Fluxus collective. "Promote living art, anti-art," reads the manifesto. "Promote NON ART REALITY to be fully grasped by all peoples, not only critics, dilettantes and professionals."sup> 5/sup>sup> 2/sup> Art should be down to earth and inclusive. "Purge the world of dead art, imitation, artificial art, abstract art, illusionistic art, mathematical art, --PURGE THE WORLD OF 'EUROPANISM'."sup> 5/sup>sup> 3/sup> Art should not follow tradition or schools of thought; it should be absolutely free to chart its own course. The original manifesto's collage of text echoed the automatic writing of Dadaism and suggested that "the arts in general...achieve a kind of one-dimensionality."sup> 5/sup>sup> 4/sup> George Maciunas corresponded frequently with other Fluxus artists, who agreed with his theory of "oneness of all the arts."sup> 5/sup>sup> 5/sup>

If the first Fluxus manifesto was opaque, it was also a sort of Rorschach test. Fluxus anti-art worked in harmony with the transgressive musical experimentation of John Cage and also alongside Andy Warhol's pop art boxes, in the sense that Fluxus products were also imitative in a jesting way of "normal" commerce, but were something completely useless. In 1965, the Tulane Drama Review magazine called Fluxus a "fusion of Spike Jones, gags, games, vaudeville, Cage and Duchamp."sup> 5/sup>sup> 6/sup> Also in 1965, Maciunas wrote a second manifesto, which makes clear that the humor has a serious purpose: to take art off its pedestal, to reduce the distance between artist and audience. The 1965 manifesto compares "Art" to "Fluxus Art-Amusement".

"Art justif[ies the] artist's professional, parasitic and elite status in society,...demonstrate[s] the [dependence]...of [the] audience upon him,...[and] demonstrate[s] that no one but the artist can do art. Therefore, art must appear to be complex, pretentious, profound, serious...valuable as a commodity so as to provide the artist with an income. To raise its value..., art is made to appear rare, limited in quantity and therefore obtainable and accessible only to the social elite and institutions."sup> 5/sup>sup> 7/sup>

In contrast,

"Fluxus Art-Amusement...establishe[es the] artist's nonprofessional status in society,...[the] artist's dispensability and inclusiveness,...demonstrate[s] that anything can be art and anyone can do it. Therefore, art-amusement must be simple, amusing, unpretentious,... require no skill or countless rehearsals, have no commodity or institutional value."sup> 5/sup>sup> 8/sup>sup>

/sup>

The clear message of free expression combined with anti-elitism and promotion of equality of artists and audience aligns with American ideals--maybe this is what Maciunas meant in the first manifesto by "PURGE THE WORLD OF 'EUROPANISM'."sup> 5/sup>sup> 9/sup> In spite of its international participation, Fluxus seems like a very American revolution.

Self-Government and the First Fluxus Collective

After a few editions of Fluxus magazine, from 1962 on, George Maciunas began to organize concerts in a number of European cities, which attracted an international following of young artists.sup> 6/sup>sup> 0/sup> About two dozen artists from several countries performed concerts and created publications between 1962 and 1964 under the name of Fluxus. They enjoyed a sort of benign infamy and "attracted vituperative media coverage until well into the early 70s."sup> 6/sup>sup> 1/sup>

With the success of the concerts, Maciunas began to imagine Fluxus as the protector of the copyright of the work of individual artists; the Fluxus brand would be a cultural movement of fun art against serious art. Naturally, some artists started to distance themselves.sup> 6/sup>sup> 2/sup> Yet he held the friendship and loyalty of several collaborators. Some Fluxus multiples were issued in small plastic boxes. A project by George Brecht called the Swim Puzzle was a small shell in a box labeled, "Swim Puzzle". Another box project is a bit more serious, making war against the preciousness of high art objects:

Fluxus...did not seek to criticize high art and continuously expand it. Instead, Maciunas intended to...reject the system of high art once and for all...For example, the standard edition of Ben Vautier's Mystery Box was to contain dust. A larger, luxury version...was to be filled with egg shells. The largest Mystery Box was to contain garbage:...[Maciunas wrote to Vautier,] "This will be very practical since we can dispose of garbage by this method and even get money for it."sup> 6/sup>sup> 3/sup>sup>

/sup>sup>

/sup>sup> /sup>Because the products of Fluxus harmonized with the independent works of its individual collaborators, it can be difficult to understand the work of individual artists as distinct from their Fluxus collaborations. Fluxus editions and anthologies were almost all drawn up by Maciunas and manufactured by him, even if they originated with ideas by other artists.sup> 6/sup>sup> 4/sup>

A few Fluxus works were actually mass-produced, if 500 can be called mass production, but usually each work was carefully assembled by Maciunas, who would vary the contents as elements ran out or as his attitude towards the work changed.sup> 6/sup>sup> 5/sup>

In his work for Fluxus, George Maciunas had a few schemes to bring artists together in which he invested real (if not entirely serious) effort. He hoped to organize a tour of musicians to Siberia. Trying to convince one New York composer, he wrote, "Climate there would be very healthy, nice cool winters. Give concerts along the Siberian railroad stops. Think it over."sup> 6/sup>sup> 6/sup> On the darker side, he invested in converting a building for a Flux Housing Cooperative. Having borrowed money for the project, he was attacked by two thugs in retribution for the unpaid loan; the attack cost him an eye. In one last attempt to create a physical community, Maciunas bought a farm in Massachusetts, again running up debt, and creating a situation that was not viable. Within two years, he would die of cancer.sup> 6/sup>sup> 7/sup> In retrospect, in addition to the financial chaos, Maciunas's distaste for celebrating the individual artist probably prevented such a physical manifestation of the collective. In this regard, Fluxus resembles the utopian socialist collective in its refusal to honor sufficiently the individual's desire for recognition.

Freedom, Individualism, and the Fluxus Collective without George Maciunas

The original Fluxus was driven by George Maciunas. Today, Fluxus continues because of the durability of its founding principles, but also because of the curiosity of scholars. In the 1980s, academics became interested in the work of Fluxus. "Whether in spite of or because of the Fluxus aversion to definitions," no other art form of the 60s and 70s has generated such academic attention. The large number of artists, the range of projects and artifacts, and the varying accuracy of archival records have been the perfect fodder for academic exploration and categorization. "More than twenty catalogues and some six different catalogues raisonnes of individual collections,...many graduate dissertations and doctoral theses on the subject...reflect the enormous and almost insatiable curiosity amongst art historians about what Fluxus may have been."sup> 6/sup>sup> 8/sup>

It is interesting that the prices for Fluxus multiples (prints, boxes, non-one-of-a-kind ephemera), which sold in the 70s for between $2.50 and $150, have not increased much in value on the art marketsup> 6/sup>sup> 9/sup>, which reflects a curious sustainability of its anti-materialist, anti-high art mission. A visit to the Wikipedia page for Fluxus describes a living enterprise, with history of George Maciunas's Fluxus on top, an electronic copy of the original manifesto, but then a new, clarified, no-nonsense translation of its mission for today:

The Fluxus artistic philosophy can be expressed as a synthesis of four key factors that define the majority of Fluxus work:

1. Fluxus is an attitude. It is not a movement or a style.

2. Fluxus is intermedia. Fluxus creators like to see what happens when different media intersect. They use found and everyday objects, sounds, images, and texts to create new combinations of objects, sounds, images, and texts.

3. Fluxus works are simple. The art is small, the texts are short, and the performances are brief.

4. Fluxus is fun. Humour has always been an important element in Fluxus.sup> 7/sup>sup> 0/sup>

In addition, there are many independent branches of Fluxus, several in Europe. At fluxnexus.com, one finds an exploded diagram of a machine, with current Fluxus artists' names labeling the parts. At the bottom is the following quote:

Fluxus has been able to grow because it's had room for dialogue and transformation. It's been able to be born and reborn several times in different ways. The fluid understanding of its own history and meaning, the central insistence on dialogue and social creativity rather than on objects and artifacts have enabled Fluxus to remain alive on the several occasions that Fluxus has been declared dead. --Ken Friedman, A FLUXUS IDEA 1/2.sup> 7/sup>sup> 1/sup>

Fluxus is alive today because it is a completely egalitarian and open collective, and because, to many people who make art, the never-ending act of (anti-art-establishment, anti-materialist) revolution continues to be meaningful--and fun.

Guerrilla Girls

Guerrilla Girls, begun in 1985, was galvanized by the selection of only 13 women artists out of a total of 169 in an exhibition at MOMA called "An International Survey of Recent Painting and Sculpture".sup> 7/sup>sup> 2/sup> The group was/is a collective of anonymous women artists, who through posters, billboards, performance and public speaking, sought/seek to expose the biases against women and minorities in art museums, commercial galleries, and in the academy. As expressed by one member,

Our agenda...is fairly narrow, but it's...important because it's a civil rights issue. Many, many women go to art schools; more than 50 percent of art students are females. And they somehow get lost, because when they leave, there's not a support structure for them. They don't have access to the system, and their sensibility is lost.sup> 7/sup>sup> 3/sup>

The Revolution and The Manifesto

The Guerrilla Girls didn't compose a founding manifesto. In an email to the writer, Guerrilla Girl Kathe Kollwitz explains, "A couple of us had the idea to put up posters on the streets of NY, invited a few friends to join us, brought the first poster to the first meeting, and everything just took off from there."sup> 7/sup>sup> 4/sup> Organizing for their revolution, the Guerrilla Girls worked strategically as artists and designers on how they would deliver their message:

What happened was we worked out how we wanted to package it all, and the Guerrilla Girls just seemed like a great idea, in terms of the double meaning of the word--"gorilla," the animal, and "guerrilla," the action. We spell it like the freedom fighters, but then we wear gorilla masks, so that it works imagistically. It's very effective. You have this angry gorilla image combined with a female body, and the women have reason to be angry. So when you see the image, you think of what the Guerrilla Girls stand for, which is the self-proclaimed conscience of the art world.sup> 7/sup>sup> 5/sup>

The strength and clarity of the graphic design of the posters plus the image of the women in gorilla masks giving interviews and taking action on the street communicated the message to museums, galleries, and collectors: we're smart; we're funny; we've got the facts. We call for the American value of equal economic opportunity and an equal chance for our artwork to be part of art history. We will not go away until you make things right.

Self-Government and The Collective

In the 1990s, in an interview on NPR's Fresh Air, Guerrilla Girl Alice Neel described the messiness of operating as a democratic collective:

Over the past ten years, we've come to resemble a large, crazy but caring dysfunctional family. We argue, shout, whine, complain, change our minds, and continually threaten to quit if we don't get our way. We work the phone lines between meetings to understand our differing positions. We rarely vote and proceed by consensus most of the time. Some drop out of the group, but eventually most of us come back, after days, months and sometimes years. The Christmas parties and reunions are terrific. We care a lot about one another, even if we don't see things the same way. Everyone has a poster she really hates and a poster she really loves. We agree that we can disagree. Maybe that's democracy.sup> 7/sup>sup> 6/sup>

The anonymity of each Guerrilla Girl, adopted for professional protection and to depersonalize the motives of the group, is also key to the equal status of each member. Guerrilla Girl Zora Neale Hurston said,

Being anonymous, operating under code names and alter egos, has meant there are no career gains to be earned by being a Guerrilla Girl. This makes us all equal, gives us each an equal voice, no matter what our positions may be in the "real" world.sup> 7/sup>sup> 7/sup>

Freedom and Individualism

Of the three collectives discussed in this research, Guerrilla Girls is the most cohesive and perhaps the most influential. In 1987, when Guerrilla Girls protested the overwhelmingly white and male selections for the Whitney Biennial, a non-profit gallery called The Clocktower offered them the space to curate an alternative show. Instead, they used the Whitney's statistics to do an exhibition of information "exposing the museum's pathetic and worsening record on women and artists of color. All of the statistics came from the museum's own publications."sup> 7/sup>sup> 8/sup>sup> /sup>The most recent Whitney Biennial of 2010 has been called "The Women's Biennial" for showing more than 50% women artists.sup> 7/sup>sup> 9/sup>

Guerrilla Girls have published many posters, an art history book, a book directed at young people about gender bias and women's identity, and another about their own history. They have a long list of appearances in academic publications. The collective is going strong today; many of the original members make public appearances, and their message and means of communication have adapted to the technological changes of the last 26 years. Their web address is www.guerrillagirls.com. As with Fluxus, Guerrilla Girls has inspired imitation. There are foreign language copies of its posters and two spinoff groups. Some former members have organized as a touring theater group and GuerrillaGirlsBroadBand deals with internet and workplace issues.sup> 8/sup>sup> 0/sup>

Although Guerrilla Girls never wrote a founding manifesto, they did write one in 2010 to deliver to the graduates of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Several of its tenets deal directly with democratic principles and an idea of the place America should be: "Give collectors, curators, and museum directors tough love....Make sure that museums cast a wider net and collect the real story of our culture. Demand ethical standards inside museums!" Revolt and replace corrupt institutions that don't represent the people. "Be impatient....Claim your place. Put on your own shows, create your own companies, develop your own projects....Be the art world you want to take part in." Equality is the right to free labor. "Be anonymous....Anonymous free speech is protected by the First Amendment. So join that long line of anonymous masked avengers, like Robin Hood, Batman, and of course, Wonder Woman."sup> 8/sup>sup> 1/sup> Freedom of expression is an American right.

The artist collectives in this study model the interplay of American ideals with social realities. Joining a collective with other artists may present both advantages and disadvantages for the individual artist, perhaps effecting a compromise of quantity, quality, or kind of art produced. If the status of members of an art collective is unequal, the individual member might face similar barriers to visibility that she faces outside it. In spite of these risks, the art collective is important because it can create a presence, a space, for something new or "revolutionary" in American culture.

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Instructional Design

This unit of instruction is divided into three parts, to be interspersed through the year-long curriculum, creating a recurring theme. The first part, dealing with issues drawn from the work and history of Group f.64, addresses key issues of the research--the idea of an artistic revolution; the exercise of democracy in an artist collective; the problems of unequal status of the individual members of a collective and how social inequality influences the story of culture. In addition, each of the three collectives in the research produced photographic work--as pure aesthetic study (in the case of Group f. 64), as documentation of performance art (Fluxus), or incidentally, as part of the graphic design of posters and billboards (Guerrilla Girls). Students will produce photographs that reflect these expressive and functional possibilities of photography.

I do want to note that illustrated lecture is a crucial part of these units; it is indispensible to conveying the background knowledge students need in order to have substantive understanding of the questions. While lecture is not now fashionable as a teaching method, I, as a student, enjoyed and learned from lecture. As a teacher, I find that if I pair my talks with illustrations (slides or digital presentations) and keep my talks brief and focused, students are attentive and engaged.

Part I: America Through the Lens of The Artist Collective: Lessons of Group f. 64

A. Illustrated Lecture (Background): American painting at the dawn of photography; American photography in the 19th century--its uses, place in culture, attitudes towards. Illustrations: paintings by George Caleb Bingham and others; photographs by Mathew Brady (portaiture and Civil War work) and Carlton Watkins (images of the mountain west). Class discussion: What story of America is told by these images? Choose one painting and one or two photographs and ask for student observations and interpretation.

B. Class discussion (Small group then whole class): Organize students in groups of three to four and issue each group several unfamiliar reproductions of 19th century painting and photography. Discussion prompt: Compare photographs and paintings as a means of recording history and as means of personal expression. Instruct groups to record a t-chart of advantages and disadvantages of each medium for each purpose. Reconvene whole class to review the results of the small group discussions. Points to emphasize: painting demands skills that take a long time to develop; individual paintings take a long time to make; painting may be inaccurate but can be more obviously expressive of a point of view. Photography is an accurate record and (in the 19th century, somewhat) less technically demanding. Further questions to discuss: If pictures are easy to make and factual in content, can they be art? How does the artist put his point of view into a photograph?

C. Class discussion (Small group then whole class): Organize students in groups of three to four and issue each group several examples of both pictorialist photographs and straight photographs, labeled only with photographer and title. Instruct students to organize the images into two stylistic groups and create a t-chart to record the contrasting attributes of each style. Reconvene as a whole class and record student observations. Introduce vocabulary: pictorialism, straight photography, and review the salient attributes of each.

D. Individual Assignment: Students choose either pictorialism or straight photography as the style they will emulate to produce one fine print. Works will employ the design principle "emphasis" (dominance/subordination). Each photograph must have a title that reflects the selected style. Pictorialist works will be named after emotions or abstract nouns while titles of straight photographs will directly reflect the subject matter of the image. Straight photographs will employ accepted technical standards including proper exposure, full tonal range, and sharp focus. Pictorialist photographs may use any means to obscure the image and enhance the idea reflected in the image title, including using "improper" exposure, scratching the negative, and/or painting or drawing on the print.

E. Classroom Experience: On the day images are due, students are to gather in two large groups (collectives) according their chosen style. Each collective will be instructed to carefully consider and critique all of the photos created by their members and to create a democratic process by which they decide which images will be displayed on behalf of their group in order to best represent their stylistic point-of-view. Each collective may choose only three pictures to represent their group.

F. Discussion and Written Reflection: On the following day, students will find only the images they chose posted on the classroom gallery walls. Discuss the qualities of the posted photographs, the application of elements and/or principles of design, particularly dominance/subordination. Important questions: What does it feel like to be selected? What does it feel like to be excluded? Did your group's process seem fair? As Americans, should everyone who wants their work to be exhibited have that right? (Freedom of speech.) What function does exclusion or limited membership serve? Can originality be confused with bad work? Is full inclusion incompatible with nurturing excellence? Students will write a individual reflections.

G. Discussion: On the next day, students will find all assignments posted on the gallery wall. Class discussion will be focused on pointing out positive qualities of images that were not seen when most were excluded.

H. Illustrated Lecture: Pictorialism, straight photography, some history of the collective in America, and Group f.64. Motivations for the pictorialist style, influence of technology on painting, modernism, Alfred Stieglitz, Paul Strand, New York as center of gravity for culture. William Mortensen. Introduction to Edward Weston and other individual members of Group f.64; early examples of American collectivism; Benjamin Franklin's initiatives for a public library and fire department cooperative; the 19th century artisan collective. Group f.64, the manifesto, the exhibition at the DeYoung Museum, the different status of the members, the effect of the Depression in breaking up the group, the experience of the women photographers. Small Group followed by Class discussion: Issue copies of the Group f.64 manifesto and instruct small groups to read through and condense the manifesto into bullet points. What were the reasons for the founding of Group f. 64? In whole class discussion, emphasize social support; creating a cultural center of gravity on the west coast; consolidating a new theory of photographic art.

Part II: Freedom, Fluxus, Collaboration, and Fun

A. Illustrated Lecture: The history of Fluxus, including Fluxus today; examples of the work of Fluxus and an image of the original Fluxus manifesto. Examples of the work of other contemporary performance artists and analysis of what makes performance art differ from theater; the work of Chris Burden. Class discussion: read and interpret the original Fluxus manifesto.

B. Group Assignment: Assign students to groups of three or four to collaborate on putting together a "happening". The event must be planned out in advance as a written narrative or script prescribing an activity that comes to a predetermined conclusion and that takes no longer than 8 minutes to perform. The event may not be rehearsed and must contain an element of chance.

C. Class Activity/Individual Assignment: Groups will execute their performance art for the whole class. Students not performing will take turns as the photographers to document the works, possibly on their own phone-based cameras. Students will each produce one digital photograph with a written narrative describing the event they recorded.

D. Class Discussion: Post all student assignments in classroom gallery. Questions: Tell about the experience of collaboration. Which is the art, the performance or the photograph of the performance? Does art need to be an object or image? Do these images look like art? Are aesthetic or design considerations essential to an image being art?

Part III: Guerrilla Girls: Fighting for Economic Justice and Cultural Representation Behind Fake Fur

A. Illustrated Lecture: The history of Guerrilla Girls; their billboards and posters; the use of design principles, irony, and humor to create works that communicate effectively. Class discussion: Why are each of the following important to the group's longevity and effectiveness: anonymity, equality, mission, and the use of facts and statistics?

B. Group Assignment: Students will work in groups of three or four on the following project: choose a social ill that needs to be addressed and research the facts and statistics that describe the problem. Groups will use digital media to design a poster that advocates for change, using statistical facts and at least one photographic element. Works will employ the design principle "emphasis" (dominance/subordination).

C. Individual Critique and Group Discussion: Students will write a critique of their group's work, describing their collaboration. Each will analyze their design and explain their use of design principles. All assignments will be printed and posted in the classroom gallery, and class discussion will focus on the design of the most effective posters. Posters will be displayed on campus.

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Bibliography

American Photography - A Century of Images. VHS. Directed by Hovde Ellen. Atlanta: PBS, 1999.

Bunnell, Peter C.. Inside the Photograph: Writings on Twentieth-Century Photography. New York: Aperture Foundation, 2006.

Confessions of the Guerrilla Girls: by the Guerrilla Girls (Whoever They Really Are) ; with an essay by Whitney Chadwick. New York: HarperPerennial, 1995.

Curl, John. For All the People: Uncovering the Hidden History of Cooperation, Cooperative Movements, and Communalism in America. Oakland, CA: PM Press, 2009.

Foner, Eric. The Story of American Freedom. New York: W.W. Norton, 1998.

Gablik, Suzi. Conversations Before the End of Time: Dialogues on Art, Life & Spritual Renewal. New York: Thames and Hudson, 1995.

Greenough, Sarah. On the Art of Fixing a Shadow: One Hundred and Fifty Years of Photography. Washington, D.C.: National Gallery of Art, 1989.

Heyman, Therese Thau, Mary Street Alinder, and Naomi Rosenblum. Seeing Straight: the f.64 Revolution in Photography. Oakland, CA: Oakland Museum, 1992.

http://www.fluxnexus.com

http://guerrillagirls.com

http://www.guerrillagirls.com/books/images/SAICcommencement5%2022%2010.pdf

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluxus

Kellein, Thomas, and Jon Hendricks. Fluxus. London: Thames and Hudson, 1995.

Leikin, Steven Bernard. The Practical Utopians: American Workers and the Cooperative Movement in the Gilded Age. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2005.

Rule, Amy, Nancy Solomon, and Leon Zimlich. Original Sources: Art and Archives at the Center for Creative Photography. Tucson, AZ: Center for Creative Photography, University of Arizona, 2002.

Tocqueville, Alexis de, and J. P. Mayer. Democracy in America. New York: Perennial Classics, 2000.

Yablonsky, Linda. "Women's Work." New York Times, February 28, 2010.

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Implementing District Standards

The following California Content Standards for the Visual Arts (with their reference numbers), to which school district standards are aligned, are called "proficient" for grades 9-12 and are directly addressed by this unit: students will create an expressive composition using dominance and subordination (2.5); students will discuss the purposes of art in a selected [in this case, American] culture (3.4); students will compare the ways in which the meaning of a work of art changes due to [historical and cultural] context (4.2).

These additional California Content Standards for the Visual Arts (with their reference numbers), to which school district standards are aligned, are called "advanced" for grades 9-12 and are directly addressed by this unit: students will identify contemporary styles and discuss the diverse social, economic, and political developments reflected in the works of art examined (3.1); students will identify contemporary artists...who have achieved recognition and discuss ways in which their work reflects, plays a role in, or influences present-day culture (3.2); students will apply theoretical perspectives to their own works of art and the work of others in classroom critiques (4.4).

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Notes

1 For brevity, throughout, "America" or "American" indicates United States of America.
2 http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/declare.asp
3 Ibid.
4 John Curl, For All the People: Uncovering the Hidden History of Cooperation, Cooperative Movements, and Communalism in America (Oakland: PM Press, 2009), 17.
5 Tocqueville, Alexis de, and J. P. Mayer. Democracy in America (New York: Perennial Classics, 2000) 68.
6 Quoted in Curl, For All the People, 26.
7 Curl, For All the People, 24-25.
8 Ibid., 25.
9 Steven Bernard Leikin, The Practical Utopians: American Workers and the Cooperative Movement in the Gilded Age (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2005), 2.
10 Ibid., 6.
11 Ibid., 7.
12 Ibid., 3-4.
13 Eric Foner, The Story of American Freedom (New York: W.W. Norton, 1998), 62.
14 Ibid.
15 Ibid., 4.
16 Ibid., 9.
17 Ibid.
18 Ibid., 16.
19 Quoted in Eric Foner, American Freedom, 103.
20 Foner, American Freedom, 113.
21 Ibid.
22 Sarah Greenough et al, On the Art of Fixing a Shadow: One Hundred and Fifty Years of Photography (Washington, D.C.: National Gallery of Art, 1989) 9.
23 Ibid., 10-11.
24 Ibid., 27.
25 American Photography: A Century of Images, Part 1. VHS. Directed by Ellen Hovde. (Atlanta: PBS, 1999).
26 Beaumont Newhall, Foreword, Seeing Straight (The Oakland Museum, 1992), viii.
27 Ibid.
28 Quoted in Therese Thau Heyman, "Perspective on Seeing Straight," Seeing Straight, 20.
29 Quoted in Peter C. Bunnell, Inside the Photograph: Writings on Twentieth-Century Photography (New York: Aperture Foundation, 2006), 69.
30 Bunnell, Inside the Photograph, 70.
31 Quoted in Bunnell, Inside the Photograph, 70.
32 Heyman, "Perspective," 21.
33 Heyman, "Perspective," 22.
34 Reprinted in Seeing Straight, 53.
35 Heyman, "Perspective," 28.
36 Listed on back cover of exhibition catalog, Seeing Straight.
37 Quoted in John Paul Edwards, "Group F:64," Camera Craft (March 1935), reprinted in Seeing Straight, 61.
38 William Mortensen, "Venus and Vulcan," Camera Craft (June 1934), reprinted in Seeing Straight, 58.
39 Quoted in Edwards, "Group F:64," 61.
40 Ansel Adams, statement for Camera Craft, c.1933, Seeing Straight, 55.
41 Heyman, "Perspective," 31.
42 Ibid., 30.
43 Ibid., 29.
44 Quoted in Amy Rule et al, Original sources: Art and Archives at the Center for Creative Photography (Tucson: Center for Creative Photography, University of Arizona, 2002), 108.
45 Beaumont Newhall, Foreword, Seeing Straight, ix.
46 Heyman, "Perspective," 30.
47 Quoted in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluxus
48 Thomas Kellein, "I Make Jokes! Fluxus Through the Eyes of 'Chairman' George Maciunas," Fluxus (London: Thames and Hudson, 1995), 19.
49 Kellein, Fluxus, 15.
50 Ibid., 16-17.
51 Ibid., 21.
52 Quoted in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluxus
53 Ibid.
54 Kellein, Fluxus, 10.
55 Ibid.
56 Quoted in Kellein, Fluxus, 15.
57 Quoted in Jon Hendrix, "Uncovering Fluxus--Recovering Fluxus," Fluxus (London: Thames and Hudson, 1995), 134.
58 Ibid.
59 Quoted in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluxus
60 Kellein, Fluxus, 10.
61 Ibid., 9.
62 Ibid., 10.
63 Ibid., 11.
64 Quoted in Hendrix, "Uncovering Fluxus," 122.
65 Ibid.
66 Quoted in Kellein, Fluxus, 14.
67 Ibid., 22.
68 Ibid., 7.
69 Ibid.
70 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluxus
71 http://www.fluxnexus.com/
72 NPR Fresh Air interview, quoted in Confessions of the Guerrilla Girls (New York: HarperPerennial, 1995) 13.
73 Quoted in Suzi Gablik, Conversations Before the End of Time (London: Thames and Hudson, 1995), 222.
74 From an e-mail message to the author, July 18, 2011.
75 Quoted in Gablik, Conversations, 210-211.
76 Fresh Air interview, quoted in Confessions, 21.
77 Ibid.
78 Confessions, 46.
79 Linda Yablonsky, "Women's Work." New York Times, February 28, 2010, M2142.
80 http://guerrillagirls.com/admin/clarification.shtml
81 http://www.guerrillagirls.com/books/images/SAICcommencement5%2022%2010.pdf

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