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ARTH 3314: Issues in Contemporary Art (Ritson)

This guide gives starting points for conducting research in Dr. Ritson's Issues in Contemporary Art course.

The Assignment

Chicano/Chicana Artists: Decisions, Process, and Design

Instructions:  Use the example paper and presentation provided to complete this assignment.  You will receive an instructional session in the library and you will also work with the Writing Center on two occasions; the first meeting will include a review of your current essay draft before your final revision and the second meeting will offer instruction on making presentations. The presentation will be a summation of your research and since you will be very familiar with the material on your topic, you will not be allowed to use notes when presenting.

1.  Choose an individual from the list provided.  Each student must select a different individual for this assignment.

2.  Conduct research and write a 1500-word (minimum) essay on the individual.  Your paper should include the following components. Include subheadings in the paper to show that you are responding to each of these prompts: 

a.  Provide a biography of the individual: birthdate, location of birth, training, significant professional experiences, awards, and any other pertinent information that gives a background and context to the individual and the time period in which she/he worked.

b.  Provide information on a specific example of his/her work: time period of creation, materials, specifications, location, intended purpose/message, commissioned by or for whom if applicable, etc. 

c.  Answer: What choices were made in the design and creation of your selected examples of the individual's work? What was the reasoning behind the decisions that were made during design and construction? 

d.  Answer: How does the individual's work function as a consequence of its design and construction?

e.  Answer: How do the decisions that were made and the functionality of the artifact reflect the individual's design philosophy, particularly in relation to the Chicano/Chicana experience? Note: If at any point in the essay you refer to other individuals, artists, design or art movements, you must explain these and their context to your reader. Do not assume that your audience has a working knowledge of other figures, movements, etc.

f.  Your paper should include a minimum of 4 sources.  Do not reconstruct a single source or follow the argument of a source verbatim in the organization of the power point. Your paper is intended to be a synthesis of a variety of research sources and your intellectual work.

g.  All of your sources should be cited in MLA style.  Include in-text references and a list of Works Cited at the end of your essay.

h.  Your text should be free of errors in grammar or punctuation and should be written in complete sentences.

3.  After you have completed the essay, begin work on a Power Point presentation based on your paper. 

a.  Include 7 images of the individual and his/her/their work: no more and no less. Use only one image per page unless you are doing a compare and contrast. Images must be of high digital quality. 

b.  Include the text of your essay in the “Notes” section of each slide, showing which part of the essay you will present along with that slide’s image. 

c.  Each slide should be titled to guide the reader and help them to stay focused on each topic you cover in the presentation.

d.  The complete citation for each image should be included on the slide and also in the notes section.  The complete citation for any sources included in the notes should also be included.  The presentation should end with a list of Works Cited and a list of Images Cited.

Artists List

San Antonio & Texas

1) Jesse Trevino (Con Safo)

2) Rolando Briseno (Con Safo)

3) Kathy Vargas (Con Safo)

4) Cesar Martinez (Con Safo)

5) Mel Casas (Con Safo)

6) Vincent Valdez

7) Jesse Amado

8) Luis Jimenez

9) Adan Hernandez

10) Gaspar Enriquez

11) David Flores



12) Judith Baca

13) Carmen Lomas Garza

14) Yolanda Lopez

15) Celia Munoz

16) Patssi Valdez

17) Yreina Cervantez

18) Alma Lopez

19) Gilbert "Magu" Lujan

20) Carlos Almaraz

21) Laura Aguilar 

22) Diane Gamboa

23) Judithe Hernandez

24) Felix Gonzalez-Torres