Artist Manifesto


Express your personal voice through writing and presentation of an artist manifesto. The manifesto you present (or perform) may take any media form or approach you wish. Don’t be afraid to be bold and take a strong position, manifestos are many things but dull is certainly something they are not.


The purpose of creating an artist manifesto is to encourage you, as a maker, thinker, scholar, and producer of media to consider your personal voice. Throughout the semester you’ve been creating media, making choices, critiquing your choices, critiquing the choices of others, examining the work you make, and reflecting on your successes and failures. Here’s where the time you have spent reflecting after each critique of you work and the work of your peers will pay off. Hopefully, along the way, you’ve been developing an idea of what ideas and perspectives and purposes you feel most connected to. Are there stories that you feel like you’d like to tell? Are there theories or agendas you find attractive?

Your manifesto should be a statement of self-critique and self-awareness. It should reflect your knowledge of media production, of terms, techniques, and theories, and it should reflect your work in the class. Your manifesto, as a project, began the first moment you began to make media artifacts. From the first choices you make, you are beginning to formulate who you are. If you’ve not been taking notes or keeping a diary, recording your choices and you feelings about them, I suggest this is a good time to start this process, as it will serve you well throughout your career.

The manifesto presentation may take any media form you wish. It could be a written pamphlet, a zine, video, audio recording, verbal rant, performance, video essay, or some other form that best articulates your ideas. In any event, you must present the manifesto in class and you must consider the context of the classroom and the audience of your classmates. How do you successfully communicate your ideas to your audience during this time and in this context? Consider how you will interact with the space, the time, and the audience, the final form is totally up to you. Don’t be afraid to be bold and take a strong position, this will contribute to a manifesto that is engaging and challenging, manifestos are many things but dull is certainly something they are not.

The essay version should included at least two references to the readings assigned throughout the semester. Citations should follow APA, MLA, or CMoS guidelines.


The following resources will help you write your manifesto:


There are two distinct deliverables in this project:

  1. A presentation, reading, or performance of your manifesto delivered in class on the day listed in the syllabus, an
  2. An essay version of your manifesto, uploaded to the “Deliverables/Artist Manifesto” folder on the designated shared drive for your class as a PDF document (no other formats acceptable) within 48 hours of the day you present your manifesto in class (this provides you time to make revisions based on feedback received in class).

Grading Rubric

This project contributes 10% towards your final grade in the course and will be evaluated as follows:

  • The presentation/performance of your manifesto in class is personal and engaging (5%), and
  • Essay demonstrates engagement in the readings, theories, and works presented in the course, this deliverable must be submitted as a PDF document, no other formats are acceptable (5%).