Visiting Assistant Professor of Art History
Since leaving the Five College area, Salas has traveled and worked throughout Latin America, the U.S., and Europe. Salas is a past recipient of the Jacob Javits Fellowship, Fulbright Fellowship at Universidad Iberoamericana and UNAM and DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst) Fellowship, and National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute grant, among others. She has presented and lectured at Museo Tamayo (Mexico City), University of California at San Diego, American Studies Association, Freie Universität Berlin, and CLAVIS, among others. Having taught in Mexico and the United States, Salas curates, consults, and authors texts for art institutions such as Moore College of Art & Design, Turner México, Harvard University Press, Fundación Coleción Jumex, The University of Texas at Austin, and National Gallery of Art. She is currently co-curating exhibitions of Latino and Latin American Art, such as the Getty-sponsored "Aesthetic Experiments and Social Agents: Renegade Art and Action in Mexico in the 1990s" which will open at the Armory Center in Pasadena, California in 2017.
In this course we deeply investigate works of original art and material culture from the Americas, ancient to contemporary, in the Five College area. We experience works by artists such as Diego Rivera, Carmen Lomas Garza, Jean Charlot, Enrique Chagoya, Leopoldo Mendez, and Jose Guadalupe Posada as well as material objects such as textile fragments, religious figurines, and ceramics. Questioning a culture constantly propagating the rushed assimilation of images, we engage in slow and meaningful looking. Analyzing works on public display and in museum study rooms, we consider the context surrounding objects -- archival practices, cultural resource management, patronage, exhibition design, and museum architecture -- as well as their historical contexts and curatorial uses. Classes meet regularly at Five College museums and at Hampshire for discussion and presentations. Students travel by PVTA (not private car) in order to arrive at the museums. This is a speaking and writing intensive course; students create a portfolio of exhibition reviews, critical art writing, scholarly papers, presentations, and group reports; by the end of the course participants author a scholarly text on one object from a Five College Museum.
Knowledge is often described as penetrative and ideas as seminal. This course is a challenge to patriarchal frameworks of bodies, histories, and, ideas. It poses this challenge through the woman power discourses of both the global south as well as those of people of color in the United States. Transnational, transgender, and transgenerational love letters and critiques will help us consider the tensions at work between allies in the destabilized discourses of the "female" (a term itself that will be put into question) body. A virtual community, facilitated by Skype and in person meetings with vaginal artists and pedagoges, will inform our discussions. Using tools from queer theory, Latin American and Latinx studies, women's, gender, and sexuality studies, critical race studies, as well as media and visual culture studies; the course considers practices often based in the humorous, low-tech, and clever. Topics addressed include la chingada, the menstrual taboo, femicidios and the ni una menos movement, abortion, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, and vaginal cosmetic surgery. Theoretical frameworks include readings such as the "Manifesto de la invaginacion," as well as others on raunch aesthetics, bottomhood, and cannibalism. These readings will inform discussion of works of performance art, Latin dance, conceptual practices, casta paintings, public actions, music videos, and fine art. If interested in the course, please email the professor (firstname.lastname@example.org) and indicate the college at which you study, your year in your studies, and your previous study of queer theory, Latin American and Latinx studies, women's, gender, and sexuality studies, critical race studies, as well as media and visual culture studies. The relevancy of your project to the course, creation of an inclusive Five College community, as well as how early you submit information will be considered. Restricted to Div.2 and Div. 3 students. Div. 1 students by special permission only. If interested in the course, please email Faculty Assistant Senna Lauer (email@example.com) and cc Professor Salas (firstname.lastname@example.org). In your email indicate the college at which you study, your year in your studies, and your previous study of queer theory, Latin American and Latinx studies, women's, gender, and sexuality studies, critical race studies, as well as media and visual culture studies. The relevancy of your project to the course, creation of an inclusive Five College community, as well as how early you submit information will be considered.
Understanding cinema as one of the most active forces in the visual, political, and social structure of place, we will screen and discuss films which have acted as social agents in the Americas. We will read major thinkers on class, social movements, and colonialism such as Hegel, Marx, Fanon, Malcom X, and Anzaldua. Thinking in dialogue with manifestos and cultural histories, we will screen films that challenge the narrative structures, cinematic techniques, notions of political activisim, means of distribution, and even very notion of cinema. In concert, the proposals of these radical visualities will foment understandings of the moving image's capacity to enact discourses and changes in society, culture, and history. Knowledge of Spanish, Portuguese, and cinema is welcome but not necessary.
This course examines Latin American and Latino art practices based in collaboration and collectivity. We will look at artist groups such as concretismo (Helio Oiticica, Lygia Clark), New York Graphic Workshop (Luis Camnitzer, Liliana Porter), Los grupos (Felipe Ehrenberg, Maris Bustamante), the Mexican Muralists, Tucuman Arde, Polvo de gallina negra (Maris Bustamante and Monica Mayer) and ASCO (Gronk, Harry Gamboa, Willie Herron, Patssi Valdez) as well as individual practices from throughout the Americas. Such practices will foment class dialogue about labor and craft, migration and exile, design and public art, archive and erasure, social products and participatory aesthetics, iconographic imagery and collective memory. Engaging political and aesthetic debates about collaboration and collectivity, many of the assignments themselves will be experiments in co-work as well as interventions into art history by critically engaging and divulging these largely understudied practices. Foreign language skills (especially Spanish and Portuguese) are welcome, but not required.