Melissa RagonaAssociate Professor of Visual Culture and Critical Theory
Ragona teaches a range of courses including MFA Academic Seminar, sophomore required surveys in both Modern and Contemporary Visual Culture, as well as various intermediate and upper level seminars in art history, film, sound, aesthetics, and critical theory. Ragona’s critical and creative work focuses on sound design, film theory and new media practice and reception. By forging approaches from the disciplines of film studies, art history, and new media technologies, her work has sought to present a more complex aesthetic, theoretical, and historical foundation for the analysis of contemporary time-based arts. Her current book project, Readymade Sound: Andy Warhol’s Recording Aesthetics examines Warhol’s tape recording projects from the mid-sixties until the late 70s in light of audio experiments in modern art as well as contemporary practices of pattern matching and information visualization. Her essays that explore the nexus between sound and image in the films of Hollis Frampton and Paul Sharits have been published, respectively, in the MIT Press Journal, October and a forthcoming anthology, Lowering the Boom: New Essays on the Theory and History of Film Sound (Illinois University Press, 2008). In “Swing and Sway: Marie Menken’s Cinematic Events,” Women Experimental Filmmakers, ed. Robin Blaetz, Duke University Press (2007), she examines how Warhol Superstar and artist, Marie Menken used film as a way to rethink the transition from abstract expressionism to Pop Art in the 1950s and 1960s. She has also published in monographs on the work of artists, Heike Mutter and Ulrich Genth (Kerber Christof Publishers, 2006) and Christian Jankowski (JRP Ringier, 2007).