Janet Sarbanes is the author of the short story collection Army of One, and has published criticism in journals such as Afterall, Popular Music and Society, Utopian Studies and LARB. Her current book project is titled "Radical Imaginaries: Aesthetic Sociality and the Project of Autonomy." She teaches in the School of Critical Studies at CalArts and directs the MFA Creative Writing Program.
A Community of Artists: Radical Pedagogy at CalArts, 1969-72 by Janet Sarbanes
A painter, a composer, a drama scholar, two directors, and two radical social scientists sat down at a table in 1969 to plot the future of the California Institute of the Arts. These were CalArts’ first administrators, and the challenge before them—and before the faculty they’d recruited for each of their departments or “schools” of art, film, theater/dance, music, design, and critical studies—was to actualize Walt Disney’s vision of bringing all of the arts together in one institution of higher learning, resulting in “a kind of cross-pollination that [would] bring out the best in its students.”
A School Based on What Artists Wanted to Do: Alison Knowles on CalArts by Janet Sarbanes
This interview with Fluxus artist Alison Knowles took place in her Soho apartment in June 2011. Knowles describes being recruited for the original CalArts faculty by Allan Kaprow, the assistant dean of art; what it was like to teach at the institute in the first two years; the kind of student she encountered there; and the radical nature of the pedagogical situation. She also describes several pieces she did at CalArts, including an iteration of her famous House of Dust.