The Perk of Massive Tuition Fees at Barnard and Columbia

by Art Fag City on November 17, 2009 · 2 comments Events

tino sehgal, art fag city
Tino Sehgal talks with kids. Image via: Marian Goodman Gallery

I don’t understand why European conceptual artist Tino Sehgal receives quite so many accolades from the fine art community, but maybe a Barnard or Columbia student can ask him.  According to an email I was forwarded today, he’s going to discuss the subject of progress and learning with a few lucky students at the Guggenheim as a work of art. Students will earn one credit for their participation.

In keeping with Sehgal’s previous work, he doesn’t allow the work to be photographed or publicized, thus “freeing art from the glut of material overproduction“, though he does embrace the market. In this case students, not collectors, represent the primary industry supporting the piece, the estimated cost of discussing progress with the artist clocking in at approximately $1430 per head.

Sehgal Guggenheim casting call here. The Barnard & Columbia course description after the jump. 

Dear Barnard or Columbia student,

Perhaps you noticed an unusual course offering for spring of 2010: SCPP 3340, Exhibitions: Engaging Public Understanding. This spring, the course will consist of a unique opportunity to be a work of art. Instead of showing the usual sort of art objects, the Guggenheim museum will be staging an event by Tino Sehgal, a prominent young European artist, which could involve you. When visitors arrive at the Guggenheim, they will be engaged in a conversation on the subject of progress with a bright and articulate young person. That encounter will be the work of art.

Sehgal and the Guggenheim ask that those involved commit to 3 shifts of four hours each for six weeks between January 28th and March 10th. In recognition of the time required, and the creative, intellectual character of the work, Barnard is offering 1 point of academic credit for this experience. The Guggenheim will coordinate all schedules and pay travel expenses. At the end of the experience, in the spirit of the event, students will engage me, the professor, in a conversation about learning. There is no exam or paper involved — attendance and participation are everything! No art history experience is required or needed.

If you want to be involved, Tino Sehgal will be choosing people on Friday November 13 and Tuesday November 17. He will meet with students in groups of 6-10 in my office, 301 Barnard Hall, from 10am to 12:30 pm Friday and 12-2:20 pm Tuesday, for about 45 minutes. Sign-up sheets will be posted outside the art history office, 301 Barnard Hall. Extra times will be arranged if necessary. The meetings will consist of a casual group conversation with Sehgal. (This is absolutely not a beauty contest.)

Consider this once-in-a-lifetime chance.

Anne Higonnet
Professor of Art History


kellie November 17, 2009 at 5:33 pm

I guess I am confused as to why specifically Barnard and Columbia? Is this because of close proximity, or is this more of a political move?

kellie November 17, 2009 at 1:33 pm

I guess I am confused as to why specifically Barnard and Columbia? Is this because of close proximity, or is this more of a political move?

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