This course explores the use of sound in relation to moving images, including film scoring, musicals, soundtracks, music videos, and experimental sound and video art. Significant attention is devoted to digital technology and media soundscapes. Several questions are addressed in the course: How does sound reinforce regimes of audiovisual representation? How does it disrupt them? To what political ends do artists deploy sound, music, and noise? What role does technology play in their effectiveness? Screenings range from Hollywood blockbusters and immersive media to fine art, video games, and independent cinema.
This creative-collaborative assignment is meant to give students an opportunity to engage critically with visual art and explore the ways it has been put to use to both re-frame and re-conceptualize the Caribbean’s catastrophic history. By coming together around the work of one of the Caribbean artists recently featured in the Small Axe Visual Life of Catastrophe project, students are asked to think about limits and potentials of visualizing disaster through art. How might the visual arts help us see history with new eyes? In what ways do these artistic works call upon us to look at our present differently—perhaps, not just as a moment in time but as the remains of an unending catastrophe? How might both of these practices of seeing and looking compel us towards a new kind of response, a new notion of responsibility or, even, an ethics that is informed by the unimaginable atrocities that still haunt our everyday life?