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Information and Syllabus

Forum in Art and Culture - CIN100 - S22

Time: F 03:00pm - 04:50pm
Location: Comm 1251

Professor: Robert Spahr
Contact: rspahr@siu.edu
Office: Comm 1056B
Office Hours:
M  11:00am-12:00pm & 01:00pm-02:00pm
W  11:00am-12:00pm
R   09:00am-12:00pm
& by appointment

Syllabus Location: https://www.robertspahr.com/fac/
Forums Location:

Course Listings:
Forum in Art and Culture - 23817 - CIN 100 - 001


This course requires students to attend a selection of events and presentations by leading practitioners and thinkers on media arts, scholarship, and contemporary practices hosted by the University through the semester. These events include exhibitions, lectures, screenings, performances, conversations, and readings. The goal is to foster a deeper appreciation of art and culture and its significance in our lives.


  • Increase knowledge relevant in the analysis of the arts and culture.
  • Students will learn to speak and write critically about the arts and culture.
  • Develop an awareness and appreciation of the variety of approaches within the arts and culture.


Be sure to check back often for any updated information.

Jan 14
INITIAL CLASS MEETING - Introduction, Course Overview

To be viewed BEFORE class:
Hauntology, Lost Futures and 80s Nostalgia, 11:10

Jan 15 - Mar 17

Students will attend a variety of events and react/reflect through posts on the course forums.

Mar 05 - Mar 13
Spring Break

Mar 18

To be viewed BEFORE class:
Inspirations: David Bowie (Documentary), 20:21

Mar 19 - Apr 29

Students will attend a variety of events and react/reflect through posts on the course forums.

May 03 - 12:30pm-02:30pm - Northlight Studio - Comm 1251
FINAL CLASS MEETING & Group Discussion

We will not meet in person. Instead please email me a list of your seven events. Make the subject of this email read: "Forum in Art and Culture - Final"

Reaction/Reflection Responses

After attending an event, students will write a short reaction/reflection response and post this to the course forums. Please summarize the ideas presented at the event, and then respond to those ideas in relation to your own creative work and studies. Do not simply repeat information or facts that were mentioned during event: REFLECT on them. For each of your posts, please leave at least one comment on the forums to someone else's reaction/reflection posts. The goal will to have a vibrant online conversation.

All Reaction/Reflection Posts due no later than the day of our university scheduled final. No exceptions.


Course Forums Location:

The forums are where students will react/reflect on an event, as well as engage in coversation with their peers. You have the ability to upload images to the forum. If you wish to share video, please upload to a platform such as YouTube, and post the link in the forums.


Students should attend at least seven events during the semester. Events will be added to the list throughout the semester.

Attendance to all scheduled classes is expected. There are no acceptable number of absences. More than one unexcused absence may result in failure for the class. Two lates are the equivalent of one absence. Leaving a class early is considered equivalent to arriving late.

Your final grade will be determined by the following:

  • 70% Participation/Attendance
  • 30% Forum Reaction/Reflection Posts


Masks are required on the SIUC campus and in our classrooms. We will follow the mandated guidelines established by the university. Should the conditions change and we need to work remotely, I will work on transitioning our class to a hybrid online format. Further information on the SIU policy on COVID-19: https://siu.edu/coronavirus/

SIU Syllabus Attachment

SIU Syllabus Attachment - Spring '22 - PDF

Events List

Events will be added to the list throughout the semester.

Black History Month: Dr. Jason Rawls
What: Dr. Jason Rawls will discuss Hip Hop: Tools of the Trade
When: February 08, at 5pm
Where: Morris Library’s Guyon Auditorium

An associate professor of instruction at Ohio University, Rawls helped produce the critically acclaimed 1998 album, "Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star," which played a role in the era’s underground hip-hop explosion. He has also produced for and served as DJ for artists including the Beastie Boys, Ghostface of WuTang Clan, Capital Steez, Pro Era, Slum Village, Souls of Mischief, 9th Wonder and Us3.

Black History Month: Dr. Wendell O'Neal
Presentation and Art Exhibit: Blacks in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM).
What: Dr. Wendell O'Neal
When: February 10, at 4-6pm
Where: University Museum/Zoom

Register in advance for this webinar: http://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ck5-yWNGREqcuNhfdDVSkQ

Week of Welcome: Media Arts Social Event
What: Join us for Food, Fun & Sharing of Recent Work. Students, Faculty and Staff are invited.
When: Friday, February 11, 5-7pm
Where: Northlight Studio (Comm 1251)
Bring examples of your work to share.

Big Muddy Film Festival
What: All film screenings are free.
When: Thursday, February 24 - Sunday February 27, 2022
Where: The Varsity Center, Carbondale IL
Big Muddy Jurors Schedule
Big Muddy Film Festival Schedule

Black History Month: Afrocentric Fashion Show
When: Sunday February 27, at 3pm
Where: Morris Library Gyon Auditorium

Visiting Scholar Lecture: Cinema’s Indexical Invitation for Re-watching
What: Dr. Allen Redmon, Professor, Texas A&M University Central Texas
When:Thursday, March 17, 2022 at 7pm
Where: Dean’s Conference Room (COMM 1032)
More info...
If you have questions, please e-mail the event organizer, Walter Metz: wmetz@siu.edu

dyad gaze
What: An evening of films by Heather M. O'Brien
When: Saturday, March 19, 2022, 6-8PM
Where: Art Space 304, 304 Walnut St. Carbondale, IL

Sometimes I Dream in Farsi
What: Film Screening and Q&A with director Pirooz Kalayeh
When: Monday, March 21, 2022, 3:30PM
Where: Morris Library, Guyon Auditorium

The Dark Side of Fixing: The Culture and Political Economy of Global Media in Pakistan and Afghanistan
What: Public Lecture by Journalist, scholar and SIU MCMA alum Dr. Syed Irfan Ashraf
When: Thursday, March 24, 2022, 6-7PM
Where: Dean's Conference Room, Comm 1032

Journalist, scholar and SIU MCMA alum Dr. Syed Irfan Ashraf will join us to discuss his research on the political economy of the 24/7 news production processes of corporate media. Dr Ashraf worked as a fixer, reporting along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border for different national and global media, including the New York Times, on the U.S-led war on terror in Pakistan. He will discuss the system in which a battery of "fixers," gathers in conflict-riddled localities at the command of corporate media to produce news content, aid the celebrity TV anchors and foreign journalists, and then quickly disassemble as soon as the project is over. He discusses the consequences of the 24/7 commercial news cycle across innumerable channels and the outsourcing of news production. Journalists who live closer to the visceral realities of conflict are not only de-professionalized into "fixers," but their lives are also put at grave risk with lasting consequences.

Dan Mirvish: Online presentation about Independent Filmmaking
What: Public Lecture by Journalist, scholar and SIU MCMA alum Dr. Syed Irfan Ashraf
When: Thursday, March 31, 2022, 1PM
Where: Via Zoom: https://zoom.us/j/92790711912

Dan Mirvish is a director, screenwriter, producer and author. His new feature, 18½, a 70's Watergate thriller/dark comedy is currently touring and winning on the festival circuit and will be out commercially Summer 2022. Dan directed the award-winning, critically-acclaimed feature Bernard and Huey, scripted by Oscar/Pulitzer-winner Jules Feiffer. He's the author of the bestselling The Cheerful Subversive's Guide to Independent Filmmaking from Focal Press/Routledge and co-director of the Slamdance Film Festival.

MAKING KIN aka The Animals Show
What: Gallery Exhibition
When: Reception Thursday, March 31, 2022, 5PM, Exhibition Mar 31-Apr 7
Where: Gallery 1101 in the Communications Building

Exhibition of work by Aidan Binkowski, Kendra Keefer, and Leah Sutton.

Visiting Artist Lecture with Terry Conrad
What: Lecture
When: Thursday, March 31, 2022 @ 7pm
Where: Guyon Auditorium - Morris Library

Artist Bio:
Terry Conrad is interested in the community and social aspects of printmaking. In 2014, he was awarded a SPAF/NYSCA grant to develop the Adirondack Forum, a collapsible venue made of old printing blocks and other found wood that functioned as a meeting place, performance space and classroom. Terry Conrad is a 2017 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow in Drawing, Printmaking and Book Arts. He was the 2015-16 Grant Wood Fellow in Printmaking and in 2017 he took a position as an Assistant Professor in Printmaking at the University of Iowa. Conrad received his BFA from Alfred University and his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art. He has also been in group exhibitions nationally and internationally. He has been awarded residencies at Frans Masereel Centrum (Belgium), Penland School of Craft (North Carolina) and the Vermont Studio Center.
Artist Website: https://cargocollective.com/terryjamesconrad

What: College of Arts and Media Festival
When: April 7 - April 24
Where: See the brochure for various dates and times

CAMFest Brochure

Exhibits are open to the public.

Admission to the museum is free, and it is open to the public. The museum, art galleries and both halls are open Tuesdays-Fridays, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturdays, 1-4 p.m. Public metered parking is available across from the Student Center and beside Woody Hall.

Each of the museum's halls has a maximum capacity of 25 people, and face masks are required at all times when visiting. University Museum events will be compliant with the Restore Illinois Plan. The university is committed to protecting the community, so visitors must follow current campus and state pandemic safety protocols and wear masks in shared indoor spaces.

For more information, contact Stoerger at astoerger@siu.edu or visit https://museum.siu.edu.


Mitchell Gallery
Parting Shots
Jan. 11-May 7 — The works of Jerry Monteith and Daniel Overturf. Fascinating sculptures by Monteith, professor emeritus in the School of Art and Design, and four new collections of never before seen photography by Overturf, who recently retired from cinema and photography in the College of Arts and Media.

Continuum Gallery
Lighting the Way
Jan. 10-April 2 — Examples of historic lighting from around the world featuring historical and contemporary light fixtures, from seal oil lamps to chandeliers design from the museum's various collections.

Atrium Gallery
Curator's Choice
Jan. 11-May 7 — Head down these dark and mysterious passages with the museum staff as they bring out rarely seen works from the museum's Fine Arts collections.

Forge, Form, Fabricate
April 10-May 7 — A nationwide juried exhibition of collegiate metalsmiths. The works are selected by a panel of Southern Illinois Metalsmiths Society (SIMS) members and guest judges and coincides with the SIMS annual conference.


Southern Illinois Gallery
Our Region
The non-rotating exhibition features historic, geologic and anthropologic artifacts from through the region from collections through the museum and SIU's Center for Archaeological Investigations.

Lutes Gallery
European Painting, Sculpture, and Decorative Arts
The exhibition highlights paintings, sculptures, tapestries and furniture from Renaissance Europe highlighted from the collection of Carl W. Lutes.

Saluki Gallery
Big Muddy Film Festival
Feb. 1-March 12 — A compilation of videos from previous Big Muddy Film Festival participants paves the way for the 2022 film festival and will culminate in a compilation of never-before-seen videos.

Mid-Century Modern
March 22-July 30 — A combined exhibition between the School of Art and Design and University Museum will feature the art and design school's collection of mid-century modern design schematics paired with the museum's furniture collection from that period.

West Gallery
Women's Voices 2: A Collective
Feb. 1-May 7 — This annual mixed media exhibition will feature the works of 24 female artists from throughout the region chosen by guest curator Teresa Fix.

Hall of Art
Convalescent Care
Feb. 1-March 26 — The exhibition joins a campuswide STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) initiative to address health and wellness in the African American community and feature medical and spiritual healing exhibits from the museum's collection.

Study Gallery
It's an Honor
Feb. 1-May 7 — The museum will present highlights from donations by Cho-Yee To, a 1967 SIU doctoral graduate in education who will receive an honorary Doctor of Educational Leadership degree from the university. To is an emeritus professor at the University of Michigan.

International Gallery
Global Menagerie
Jan. 11-May 7 — Selected from the museum's international collections, the presentation will include exhibits from around the world featuring wildlife and animals.