Dr. Aaron Petten

Associate Professor
History of Art & Visual Culture
Master of Fine Arts

United States

Aaron Petten is a moving image and material visual culture historian. His teaching and research spans a variety of phenomena within the broader history of art, design, and visual culture.
He received his BA in Interdisciplinary Studies (in Cinema Studies and Popular Culture) from Temple University, a MA in Film and Television Studies from the Universiteit van Amsterdam, and a PhD in Film Studies from the University of East London.

Petten co-developed and collaboratively teaches the integrated studio/history course with the Animation department. He also teaches a range of undergraduate and graduate courses on modern and contemporary art and design, material visual culture, and art theory and criticism.

Petten’s research tends to concentrate on moving images – film, television, animation, video installation – and material culture. His work focuses on the ways in which particular aesthetic practices intersect, coincide, or parallel past and present art movements, historical moments, and trends in popular culture.

Petten is currently in the process of completing a book on the films and filmmaking of Harmony Korine. He is researching the history of avant-garde and experimental animation practices. He is also in the early stages of researching the ways in which the objects and artifacts of popular-material-visual culture are primarily comprised by an array of coinciding design practices that shape our aesthetic experiences and perception of particular eras.

MFA Thesis Advisor