Yale University School of Art
1156 Chapel Street, POB 208339
New Haven, Connecticut, 06520-8339
(203) 432-2600


How can we “redesign a rainbow,” as Paul Thek suggests in his 1978 “Teaching Notes for the Fourth Dimension”? The psychophysical dimensions of color have been continually debated, reinvented, structured, codified, mystified, and systematized. The term color space refers to a range of color mapped by a system, such as RGB or CMYK. But, long before these models were used to describe color on screen or paper, artists were utilizing systems to organize color in their work. Hue, value, saturation, and surface are all relative components artists use to structure color in specific ways. In this course we explore the space of color, from its visual and psychological qualities to its relationship to language and culture. Through assignments and critiques, students experiment with different approaches to using color in their own work. Readings and presentations examine principles of color interaction, as well as color’s expressive and symbolic potential. Open to all M.F.A. students.

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