Design Portfolio

The portfolio is the hub for your three main assignments for the semester. Here you will create links to new pages where you will post your work.

Play Analysis

Take a single play and find three different designs done of the play during between 1870-2011. Do a comparative analysis of the the designs, describing the aesthetic styles, conveyances of visual metaphor, plot, and place of the play, and how the individual designer is reflected in each work. For this assignment read: Lee Simonson's "More Ways Than One: Six Interpretations of Hamlet," in The Art of Scenic Design, pp. 162-174 (1000 words and at least one image from each production)

Casey: Faust
Einav: The Site Specific Stagings of Waiting for Godot
Martina: Richard III
Sara: A Midsummer Night's Dream

Visual Expression Exercise

In this exercise you will be flexing your own design muscles. You are to pick a play and create an expression of a visual metaphor you feel fits the characters, plot, and theme of the play. The assignment can be completed in any manner you choose, including collage, a sequence of images, drawings, multimedia assemblage, or digital rendering. For this assignment read Pamela Howard's "Text," "Research," and "Colour and Composition" in What is Scenography p. 33-123. Along with your expression prepare a 300 word description of your design and process and be prepared to present your work in class.

Casey: Cigarettes and Chocolate
Einav: Waiting for Godot
Martina: The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus
Sara: Suddenly Last Summer

Final Paper and Presentation

For your final paper and presentation you are to pick one area of scenic design in western theatre since 1870 and discuss how it has changed both conceptually and practically during that time period. Example areas include:

  • politic commentary and scenic thought
  • light and design
  • the body in tandem with physical space
  • media in performance spaces
  • technology and transformation on stage
  • directing styles and the relationship to scenic design

A 3500 word paper and ten minute presentation will be due during finals week.

Casey: Monumentality, Reduction, and Distortion
Einav: Political Puppetry and Scenic Design
Martina: The Silence of Storytelling on the Stage: Robert Wilson and (Re-)visualization in Traditional Theatre
Sara: Designing Dance and the Dancer in the Twentieth Century