International Journal of Art & Design Education

Room 13: The Movement and International Network

Volume 31.3   2012

Gibb, Claire


Room 13 is a global uprising of creative and entrepreneurial children who are responsible for a growing international network of student-organised art studios. Each Room 13 studio facilitates the work of young artists alongside a professional adult artist in residence, providing an exchange of ideas, skills and experience across the ages. The result is an ongoing collaboration between adults and young people and a thriving culture of philosophical enquiry driven by a motivation to think and to learn. My own experience with Room 13 spans from that of the student, to adult artist and practitioner. Working under the direction of subsequent student-management teams, I have been fortunate to be involved in the process by which Room 13 has gone on to establish an international network of student-run art studios, serving an expanding global community of young artists.
The emerging global movement surrounding these studios calls for a serious revaluation of what art is – and who is qualified to make it. Room 13 not only augments the case for the work of young artists, but presents a challenge to the current systems for art education. As the quality of formal arts education is eroded by a universal need to standardise educational experiences, the training that Room 13 provides motivates individuals and develops their creativity in a way that outstrips anything that schools, or even art colleges, can currently offer