Salzburg, Austria

Picture Generation

blended course
when 2 August 2021 - 14 August 2021
language English
duration 2 weeks
fee EUR 640

This course is part of the Salzburg International Summer Academy of Fine Arts's 2021 programme.

Course leader

Francis Ruyter

Target group

open to anyone interested in fine arts

Course aim

Artists often keep an archive of images around their workspace for inspiration. But what is the relationship and process between looking at something and integrating that into art practice, whether it is a literal or abstract integration? What is it that makes a portrait of a person sitting for that portrait so magnetic? Looking is a tool that can be used when one is lost for an idea of where to start making an artwork, or it can function as a foundation, grounding us well to be able to depart on flights of fantasy.

Looking is far from a passive activity. If looking is, therefore, a productive activity, we can improve the impact of an individual work by developing perceptive skills along with artistic ones. We will consider the possibility of collectivity in these processes. With the global acceleration of image production, can we do something to mediate, or even transform this collective looking into something more productive than it often feels, or do we need to hold on to and treasure the private sphere of immediate experiences? Perception is perhaps less about fixed truths and realities than about world-building. What does it mean when we want to make a connection outside the world that we have built around ourselves?

In the class, students learn to focus on using their eyes to push their work forward. Different artworks are analysed in the context of such an approach. Through regular practice of object description, the student will be armed with an ability to speak about how a work functions as a communication vehicle. This shared activity can uncover surprises and practical knowledge for improving the ability to transmit information in any chosen medium.

The class meetings will be a conversational rather than a lecture format. Special guests explore how they have integrated looking into their practice. There will also be time for studio work and individual consultations.

*If necessary, the course may be held exclusively online.

Fee info

EUR 640: regular fee
EUR 480: reduced fee for students


Grant applications can be sent before 3 May.