During the first session we introduced the students to the work of Jean Claude and Christo, known for wrapping buildings and structures with fabric. We also looked at Chicago based public art projects including Cloud Gate by Anish Kapoor in Millennium Park. Afterward we had the students make preliminary sketches of their journal covers, with the idea that the journal cover also is public. Additionally, we interviewed each student about what public art is to them – and compiled a list of public outlets.
Following the sessions of trying to define what public art is, we showed examples of artists that work in public but also incorporate text such as Gudrun Hasle and Jenny Holzer. Concurrently we asked the students to come up with a messages they wanted to share with their immediate public, such as classmates and later with the general public, additionally we had them research and find quotes that meant something to them. Each student created a poster which was mounted on their desk for weeks and shared found quotes they found particularly inspiring or disturbing.
Towards the end of our sessions, we looked at local artist Nathan Keay who came up with a new quote every day for four years, put it on a t-shirt and wore it on that day only. Inspired by Keay’s project the students came up with their own quotes, which were placed on t-shirts. In collaboration the class developed a performance, which was carried out in Millennium Park in Chicago wearing the t-shirts.