Master of Public Art Studies Program at USC: Art/Curatorial Practices in the Public Sphere

Master of Public Art Studies Program at USC: Art/Curatorial Practices in the Public Sphere

USC Roski School of Art and Design

April 5, 2010
Master of Public Art Studies Program at USC: Art/Curatorial Practices in the Public Sphere

Application deadline for the 2010-2011 Academic Year extended to
May 10, 2010

Director of the Program:
Joshua Decter

Roski School of Fine Arts
University of Southern California
Watt Hall 104 University Park Campus
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0292
Telephone: 213 743 8540
Fax: 213 743 4563
[email protected]


at the University of Southern California Roski School of Fine Arts in Los Angeles is a unique platform to research art, curatorial practices, and modes of cultural organizing in relation to the material/social conditions of public space, and the contemporary public sphere. The graduate program’s 2-year interdisciplinary course of study encompasses seminars on curatorial practice/organizational methods; social, urban and media theory; critical writing; exhibition histories; and selected topics in art and architectural history. Students examine how artists, curators, organizers, architects and other cultural producers engage the complexities of public space, while also investigating the theoretical and pragmatic conditions of the public sphere. The program features a curatorial practicum that functions as a laboratory for students to collaborate on the development and organization of an exhibition project that explores city-space. Students are also responsible for the research and writing of a thesis that develops innovative concepts and new scholarship on art, public space, and the public sphere. The program supports students in their academic and professional development as curators, organizers, critics, writers and scholars.Guest speakers, spring 2010 term:
Vito Acconci, Mark Bradford, Gregg Bordowitz, Julia Bryan-Wilson, Dan Cameron, Harrell Fletcher, Boris Groys, Renée Green, Maria Lind, Rick Lowe, Antonio Muntadas, Felicity Scott, John Welchman.

Guest speakers (selected), 2007-2009:
Doug Aitken, Ute Meta Bauer, Teddy Cruz, Steve Dietz, Mark Dion, Sam Durant, Andrea Fraser, Rudolf Frieling, Hou Hanru, Paul Ramirez Jonas, Grant Kester, Norman Klein, Michael Krichman, Miwon Kwon, Rick Lowe, Daniel Joseph Martinez, Allan McCollum, Anne Pasternak, Patricia Phillips, Marjetica Potrc, Gregory Sholette, Rochelle Steiner, Nato Thompson, Krzysztof Wodiczko, Peter Zellner, Tirdad Zolghadr.

Full-time Faculty:
Joshua Decter, Director of the Program and Assistant Professor
A critic and curator, Decter is a contributor to Artforum, Afterall, and other periodicals. He has organized exhibitions at PS1 in New York, The Center for Curatorial Studies/Hessel Museum of Art at Bard College, The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, Apex Art in New York, The Kunsthalle Vienna, and the Santa Monica Museum of Art, among other institutions. Decter served on the graduate faculty at The Center for Curatorial Studies and Art in Contemporary Culture at Bard College from 2003 to 2007, and has contributed essays to numerous books and exhibition catalogues over the past 25 years.

Rhea Anastas, Visiting Assistant Professor
Anastas is an art historian who taught at The Center for Curatorial Studies and Art in Contemporary Culture, Bard College, from 2001 to 2008. Anastas co-edited Dan Graham: Works 1965–2000 (2001) and Witness to Her Art: Art and Writings by Adrian Piper, Mona Hatoum, Cady Noland, Jenny Holzer, Kara Walker, Daniela Rossell and Eau de Cologne (2006), and was a co-founder of Orchard Gallery, New York.

Adjunct Faculty & Thesis Advisors:
Edgar Arceneaux
: Artist; Director, Watts House Project; Anne Bray: Curator, Executive Director, LA Freewaves; Donna Conwell: Curator-Producer, Writer, Art Historian; Janet Owen Driggs: Writer, Artist, Curator; Lauri Firstenberg: Director/Curator, LAXART; Michael Ned Holte: critic and curator; Karen Moss: Curator, Deputy Director for Exhibitions and Programs, Orange County Museum of Art; Bennett Simpson, Associate Curator, MOCA Los Angeles; Carol Stakenas: Executive Director, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE); Gloria Sutton, Art Historian and Curator; Christina Ulke: Artist, Co-Editor/Co-Publisher, Journal of Aesthetics and Protest.

For more information on the Master of Public Art Studies Program: Art/Curatorial Practices in the Public Sphere at the USC Roski School of Fine Arts, please contact us at [email protected] or visit our website at

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