Here are some contemporary artists doing some interesting things.
Follow the first link to see an ART21 video about Mark Bradford. He deals with the urban environment through various forms of printmedia, appropriation, and mixed media installations. The video is a compilation, but he is the first artist so no need to fast forward.
The second link is to some images of work by Paul Sietsema, an artist who uses printmedia in a practice which explores how materiality effects sociocultural histories.
The third link is to images of an Artist Book by Alejandro Casazi. He is a California based artist from Columbia whose book Kissing the Pavement is a screen printed book exploring some of the graphic qualities of urban violence and the blurring of boundaries between peoples in a city. Pay careful attention to how the act of turning a page effects the meaning of the work.
There are literally tons of artists who are dealing with issues pertaining to or related to the built environment. Some, like William Kentridge (look for the ART21 documentary on him while on their site) come from a history of printmaking and screen printing, even if their current work does not utilize those processes at the moment. Other contemporary artists who might be of interest: Rachel Whiteread, Do-Ho Suh, Ann Hamilton (all of whom often make work that entail the existence of memory or space defined either by the built environment, or through people’s contact with it)
Anyone else who has some artists to share, please comment and share them. Let’s try to build a class list of artists whose works explore the relationship between people and the built environment! I know some people in the class are particularly interested in artists who are utilizing screenprinting methods. Anyone with artist suggestions, please speak up!