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The Intradisciplinary Seminar at Cooper Union

17 January - 8 May | Mondays, 7-9pm

Course Description

Registration for spring is now closed. If you have questions about registration, please email

Please note: the first meeting of IDS will be on TUESDAY, 17 January as Monday is MLK Day. All following classes will be on Mondays. 

Let us suppose that the idea of art can be expanded to embrace the whole range of man-made things, including all tools and writing in addition to the useless, beautiful, and poetic things of the world. By this view the universe of man-made things simply coincides with the history of art. It then becomes an urgent requirement to devise better ways of considering everything men have ever made. This we may achieve sooner by proceeding from art rather than from use, for if we depart from use alone, all useless things are overlooked, but if we take the desirableness of things as our point of departure, then useful objects are properly seen as things we value more or less dearly.

–George Kubler, The Shape of Time

This Semester in the Intradisciplinary Seminar, works of art on view in public collections will serve as a point of departure for critical dialogue between invited guests about the desires made manifest in their own work. In alternating weeks enrolled students will consider these conversations in relation to George Kubler's 1962 book The Shape of Time: Remarks on the History of Things. Over the course of the semester, enrolled students will bring these discussions to bear on their own designs for ideal museums for their own works of art.

This class meets Mondays at 7pm in the Rose Auditorium at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art.

JAN 17 - Andrew Norman Wilson (Tuesday meeting, in observance of MLK Day)

JAN 23 - Chapter One - The History of Things

JAN 30 - Jarrett Earnest, Allyson Vieira

FEB 06 - Chapters Two and Three - Classes of Things, The Propogation of Things

FEB 13 - Tom Healy and Tom Sachs


FEB 27 - Chapter Four - Some Kinds of Duration

MAR 6 - The Elements of Art, Seth Cameron


MAR 20 - Conclusion

MAR 27 - Mattathias Schwartz

APR 3 - Artists on Kubler: Ad Reinhardt, Robert Smithson, and others

APR 10 - Avi Mograbi

APR 17 - TBD

APR 24 - Nathlie Provosty & Julia Rommel

MAY 1 - FINAL PROJECT PRESENTATIONS (Enrolled Cooper students)

MAY 8 - FINAL PROJECT PRESENTATIONS (Enrolled Cooper students)


The Fall 2016 Intradisciplinary Seminar is part of the Robert Lehman Visiting Artist Program at The Cooper Union. Cooper Union is grateful for major funding support from the Robert Lehman Foundation.


Seth Cameron

Seth Cameron is a painter and writer and part of The Bruce High Quality Foundation. The Foundation creates installations, videos, paintings, sculptures, performances, and institutions that reveal our collective creative agency within the seemingly monolithic forces of art and social history. The Foundation has exhibited in The Whitney Biennial, the Venice Bienniale, and the Lyon Bienniale. The past few years have included exhibitions with The Lever House, Vito Schnabel, Mark Fletcher, and Acquavella Gallery in New York; Galerie Bruno Bischofberger in Zurich; Almine Rech Gallery in Brussels; and McClaine Gallery in Houston. In 2012 the Foundation did a national arts education tour with Creative Time. In 2013 The Brooklyn Museum hosted its first museum retrospective. Cameron currently serves as President of BHQFU.