module specification

SM6071 - Installation and Live Art (2023/24)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2023/24
Module title Installation and Live Art
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Art, Architecture and Design
Total study hours 150
114 hours Guided independent study
36 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Project 60%   Installation or Live Art work, to be shown as part of a group-curated exhibition.
Coursework 40%   Portfolio, documenting and contextualising work created for the exhibition, as well as reflecting on overall journey.
Running in 2023/24

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester City Tuesday Morning

Module summary

This module will explore creative strategies in the application of installation art and performative practices, beyond a strictly theatrical context. In doing so, it will promote multi-disciplinary crossovers, in particular between performance, visual and multimedia arts. A particular focus will be dedicated to the conceptual investigation of site and the creative adaptation and transformation of this.

The function and aesthetics of installation and live art will be explored in their broadest significance, making use of concepts such as durational practice, rituality, liminality, hybridity and contamination and relevant theoretical references in this respect. Studying the work of contemporary and historical practices in installation, site-specific and site-responsive art, students will develop new work to be presented and contextualised as part of a self-curated event and will benefit from visits and collaborations with professional structures, both inside the University and outside (galleries, art centres and collaborating practitioners). In this sense, the module will represent an opportunity to gain professional skills both in the artistic and academic development of new work, as well as in the documentation and dissemination of this.

The module aims to critically engage with the contexts of contemporary art and contemporary curating, in light of a range of pertinent theoretical perspectives, applying this knowledge to both live work and installation art and recorded media. The module will promote innovative crossovers between artistic disciplines, in particular performance, visual and digital media, and develop an understanding of the principles of arts curatorship and foster professional skills in the documentation, contextualisation and dissemination of new work.

Prior learning requirements

Please include details of any pre- or co- requisites for the module: SM5020, SM5076 or SM5080, SM5074 or SM5073

Available for Study Abroad? YES


Through practical workshops, lectures and seminars, students will investigate ideas of performativity and interdisciplinarity, as explored by established practitioners in installation art and investigate these directly through creative tasks and experiences.

In the first part of the module, weekly themes will be explored in light of work by artists such as Theaster Gates, Stelarc, Bill Viola, Rebecca Horn, Marina Abramovic, Laurie Anderson, Bruce Nauman etc. Inspired by such artists, students will engage in creative tasks, orientated to the creation of new material exploring the theme in question. LO1,LO2

In the second part of the module, students will investigate different strategies for the creation and documentation installation and live art. Through off-site sessions, they will closely examine relevant venues and organisations, such as Tate Modern and Whitechapel Gallery, and investigate their curatorial practice and ethos. LO3,LO4

As a result of the above experiences, towards the end of the module students will begin to produce a new installation or live art work and document and disseminate this as part of group-curated event. LO3,LO4

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

The following learning and teaching strategies are going to be employed in the course of this module:

• Practical workshops;
• Multimedia lectures;
• Student-led seminars;
• Online activities through blended learning approaches;
• Visits to relevant points of interest;
• Interviews of professionals in the industry;
• An independent practical project (assessed);
• A reflective portfolio (assessed).

Scheduled teaching ensures that independent study is effective and addresses the learning outcomes and assessment tasks. Students are expected to, and have the opportunity to, continue with their studies outside of scheduled classes. There will be a range of learning strategies deployed and individual learning styles will be accommodated. The module’s learning outcomes, its contents and delivery, have been scrutinised and will be regularly reviewed to ensure an inclusive approach to pedagogic practice.

The module and course utilise the University’s blended learning platform to support and reinforce learning, to foster peer-to-peer communication and to facilitate tutorial support for students. Reflective learning is promoted through assessment items and interim formative feedback points that ask students to reflect on their progress, seek help where they identify the opportunity for improvement in learning strategies and outcomes, and make recommendations to themselves for future development. Throughout the module, students build a body of work, including reflections on progress and achievement.

The School’s programme of employability events and embedded work-related learning within the curriculum supports students’ personal development planning. Through these initiatives, students are increasingly able, as they progress from year to year, to understand the professional environment of their disciplines, the various opportunities available to them, and how to shape their learning according to their ambitions.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students will be able to:

A. Cognitive Intellectual Abilities

LO 1 demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate and communicate the broader significance of performativity and interdisciplinarity, with reference to a variety of contemporary art practices and theories;

A. Knowledge and Understanding

LO 2 evidence furthered knowledge of key practices in the field of installation and live art, both contemporary and historical, and the ability to describe and comment upon functional, aesthetic, ethical and philosophical questions upon which these are based;

B. Transferable Skills

LO3 demonstrate practical skills in the creation of original artistic work, exercising initiative and decision-making, drawing on relevant methodologies of creative practice as research;

B. Subject Specific Skills

LO4 display advanced skills in the creation, documentation and contextualisation, as well as in in the general curation of original work, communication to both specialist and non-specialist audiences.

Assessment strategy

Assessment modes on this module are aimed at providing opportunities to test academic, artistic and professional skills, in line with the learning outcomes. Please note that the practical assessment modes listed below are part of the same event, assessed both in its individual components (independent tasks) and the process of curating these as a group.

Installation / Live Art work: this is a piece of creative work, applying the techniques and methods explored throughout the module. Students will work on an independently conceived and produced piece, in the form of an installation or live art piece, as part of a group-curated exhibition event. This may include the creation of objects, photography, video and other digital media. Students will be assessed on the artistic skills utilised and on their initiative and decision-making in applying these; they will also be assessed on their overall process on this module, including their collaborative skills in the co-curation of the exhibition event featuring their respective works. LO1-4

Project portfolio: this written assignment supports, documents and contextualises the students’ independent projects. It should contain a critical reflection on the process of creation and an evaluation of the context of the work, with reference to the theories and practitioners explored in class. Additional material may include photography, videography, design and creative writing. This assignment may be submitted as a digital portfolio. LO1-4

Responding to the ESJ Framework, assessments are developed with inclusivity in mind and a student-centred approach. Students are invited to discuss with the tutor the tailoring of their individual projects to the assessment criteria, with the possibility of liaising alternative formats of assessment, where needed.