Figuration’s impact on artistic practices shapes much of contemporary art. This studio seminar will examine painting’s rich, coded history connected to the figure and the body in the 21st century. The course will unravel current debates and discussions related to issues of identity, race, gender, beauty, abjection, narration, politics, technology and the ephemeral. Students will grow an understanding of how and why we identify with the figure culturally, socially and physiologically. Students will make studio work, read and respond to critical texts, participate in seminar presentations, and write academic essays that respond to our current modern speculation on these issues.