Click here to download PDF version of the Parallel Session programme for Friday 11 November.
Please note: the Parallel Session programme may be subject to change and we recommend delegates check this webpage regularly throughout the conference for the most up-to-date information.
Breakout Room 1
Can a garden be a work of art?
Si Poole | University of Chester
Gardening in Art and Design Education is a prescient means of developing an eco-pedagogy that transforms the lives of all learners; regardless of the challenges or triumphs that their lived experiences have afforded them. It creates a sense of be-longing for all learners, by developing understandings of self-cultivation, social justice, equity, wellbeing and crucially a shared appreciation of where and how we live. This paper will briefly outline some of these ideas before exploring the potential obstacles still facing the otherwise growing interest in the intersection between education, art and design, and gardens.
Cultivating Critical Thinkers: An Inquiry into Critical and Contextual Discussion within Design Education
Eleanor Herring | Glasgow School of Art
This paper will examine how to support critical and contextual discussion at Glasgow School of Art. It is my experience that some students do not feel able or want to contribute to the critical dimension of these sessions; others object to the tone or contribution from other students; and there is a difficulty for everyone in knowing how to address sensitive or challenging subjects. Within design education, it is accepted that while the acquisition of procedural knowledge is important, more important still is that students become active critical thinkers and communicators. But what makes a critical space in an Art School and how is it cultivated? What is my role as the educator leading critical and contextual discussions, and how can I work with and support students to develop their critical skills? Furthermore, what pedagogical strategies would be useful to support critical engagement? This paper draws on original pedagogical research conducted as part of the PG Cert in Higher Education Learning, Teaching in the Creative Disciplines. Using this research, the paper will explore the extent to which collaborative learning and scaffolding of critical thinking skills is helpful when crafting teaching sessions.
Transnationalism in practice-based inquiry: placemaking in untethered histories
Molly Pardoe | Goldsmiths College
Transnational identity offers a distinct capacity to use non-belonging and liminality as tools for inquiry. In navigating the shared space of transnationalism and creative process, my practice research works with untethered histories and distinct placemaking practices as roots for alternative knowledges. In this presentation, I will orient perspectives on these roots as processes of adaptation. My methodology is grounded within situated knowledges (Haraway 1988), temporalities of new materialist frameworks (e.g. Barad 2007), and transnational identity literature. I will use this presentation to share the ways in which negotiations of belonging are being accessed as creative impetus in my own work, and explore how this might be able to play a part in pedagogies geared toward active learning in community settings. This is a methodologically-led presentation and intends to contribute to conversations on art practice as a form of knowledge.
Two Years of Development and Workshops in the Growth Garden, School of Fashion and Textiles, Birmingham City University (BCU)
Caroline Raybould & Sheila Bennett | Birmingham City University
Climate change and biodiversity extinction are difficult topics to raise in the confines of a standard classroom. A key challenge in education must be to engage with these complex themes, then reassess our relationship with nature. St. Pierre (2019: 102) states that “The legacies of mastery, rationalism and humanism continue to dominate academia, leading to an emotional and intellectual distance that keeps design at arm’s length from intimate learning about the natural world”. With students being the next generation of changemakers, what are the new mindsets and pedagogies that will enable transformation? How can we imbue hope, and embed sustainability without instilling anxiety? An opportunity to bring change came when staff started a garden for growing natural dyes in the School of Fashion and Textiles at BCU. The garden developed over a two-year period into a valuable space for staff and students to work together, grow plants and participate in workshops. Experiential learning was key, with sustainable thinking and mindsets central to the activities. The workshops offered students a place to relax, collaborate, and engage with the natural environment. The classroom moved outside with nature as teacher: “New relationships and commensurate language will arise slowly out of action - actual engagement in new ways of being present to, and interacting with, the world” (Jickling et al., 2018: 36). This paper relates the iterative development of the plot, focussing on the activities of two members of staff, who were key in developing and maintaining what became known as The Growth Garden. Student workshops are discussed, with events including seed planting, harvesting and indigo processing, and an interdisciplinary design thinking workshop. The workshops attracted students from diverse courses and nationalities, and offered opportunities for interdisciplinary learning, and embodied cognition (Steinbach, 2018).
Breakout Room 2
A Green Manifesto for Art, Craft and Design Education
Emese Hall | University of Exeter
In the challenging - and frightening - times in which we now live, education is seen as playing a key role in making change for the better. However, the DfE’s (2022) strategy for sustainability and climate change education is lacking in many areas and fails to address students’, teachers’, and teacher educators’ priorities (Dunlop & Rushton, 2022). The environmental and climate emergency is of great concern to young people and these issues should be addressed across the whole curriculum, not just in geography and science (Teach the Future, 2022). Further, there needs to be more focus on emotions rather than facts, wellbeing rather than the economy. Gradgrindian methods are inappropriate. So the question I pose is: How can we ‘green’ art, craft and design education to ensure it is both effective and affective? The beauty of our subject is that it connects to everything past, present and future, real and imagined. According to Sullivan (2021, p. 414), art can change the world because it is ‘homeless, endless, and edgeless’. This sounds exciting but does not aid teachers in curriculum design. In this presentation I will share an emergent manifesto for an environmentally responsive art, craft and design curriculum...
Containing Disability: Historicising the National Curriculum for Art
Claire Penketh | Liverpool Hope University
The contemporaneous evolution of the National Curriculum for Art and the establishment of a single category of SEN in Britain in the 1980s and 1990s, provides the focus for this exploration of the relationship between disability and art education. Arguments concerning the establishment of a new curriculum resulted in the reiteration of ideal characteristics for art education, with these and the single category of SEN, both implicated in the creation of “pedagogic identities”. However, debates regarding the categorisation of learners with so-called SEN, were obscured by the ‘culture-shock’ of conservative, centralised assessment regimes and increased regulation. The late twentieth century was significant for advances in disability rights, the disability arts movement and moves towards a social model of disability. Whilst the ideal characteristics of art education point towards its compatibility with this social orientation, its influence was limited. I argue that the dominance of the single category of SEN was a key factor in this failing. The paper proposes a historical approach to exploring the limitations it has placed on our ability to learn from disability.
The Art and Ecology of Creative Intervention
Franziska Schenk | Birmingham City University, School of Art
Conceived in response to the current environmental and societal turmoil, the timely ‘Art and Ecology: Creative Interventions’ MA module provides an opportune springboard for students to devise creative proposals towards change. Affording a case study on how to facilitate creative ecological learning, the module necessitated a fresh approach to teaching across disciplines and courses - one that generates ecosystems of collective learning and action. Innovative teaching strategies were devised encouraging students to 1) work across the boundaries of specialisms 2) interact with other students not on their own course 3) respond to real-life ecological sites/issues to engender creative strategies for change. Crucially, experiential place-based learning proved instrumental, whereby students engage initially with the specific/local (i.e., a site of personal significance) before considering the general implications of the systemic. Evidence suggests that learners indeed ‘zoom out’ to embrace an interdisciplinary ecological perspective. In conjunction, the Art and Ecology ‘toolbox’ (comprising of custom-designed strategic prompts and probe-tools) successfully assists students in mapping their site/line of inquiry. Providing stepping-stones that encourage an on-going process of enquiry, this leads to identifying, visualising, and proposing effective creative interventionist strategies for ecological change. Eclectic, imaginative student outcomes will be deployed here to confirm this.
The Logbook Collective: Reconnecting with our communities and our environments
A community arts & crafts project exploring the sense of belonging in different parts of Scotland through the shared presence of water
The Logbook Collective (Jiaqi Zheng, Ziyue Zhang, Wenyi Pan & Weronika Tupaj) | Glasgow School of Art
In the summer of 2022, The Logbook Collective designed and delivered a community Arts & Crafts project to improve mental well-being, increase environmental awareness and promote interactions between distributed communities. The project was funded by the Quality Assurance Agency for Scotland under the Enhancement Theme ‘Resilient Learning Communities’, with a particular focus on belonging. The project consisted of creative workshops held in two locations: at the Forth and Clyde Canal, Glasgow; and Loch of Blairs, Forres. With a central focus on water, the project aims to explore the sense of belonging in different parts of Scotland via activities such as historical voyages, sustainable paper-making, and origami-crafting. The project embodied three mutually reinforcing aspects (1) Art & Crafts activity not only acts as a creative stimulus but also creates a platform for diverse expressions, whether in visual, physical, or verbal forms. (2) The roles of presenter and recipient are diluted, while mutual-learning took over as a result of active community participation and the exchange of intercultural, cross-generational, and interdisciplinary knowledge throughout the multiple workshops. (3) The possibility of an alternative learning space outside of schools promotes a stronger connection between participants and their immediate surroundings.
Breakout Room 3
“I think… I sketch”. The requirements and strategies of Higher Level Sketching Skills for artwork students
Che Aleha Ladin, Azni Yati Kamaruddin & Simah Mamat | University of Malaya
The work of Visual Art greatly demands sketching as a starting point for creative and innovative ideas, solving problems that ultimately lead to high quality design and aesthetic quality. This study aims to identify the requirements of Higher Level Sketching Skills (HLSS) and developing the strategies of the process in visual art for secondary school. A qualitative study used a semi-structured interview in collecting data. Five fourth grade students, one teacher, and three expert panels in Visual Arts Education were selected as participants. The data was triangulated and peer reviewed. This study found that students could not sketch well as they lack guidance in sketching, exposure to various materials and knowledge of sketching. A HLSS strategies was developed which include elements of image copying, sketching based on basic formulations, using a variety of materials and media, understanding the appeal and composition, sketching based on perspectives, and expressing ideas in articulating issues, themes, and culture in sketches. This study could contribute knowledge and guideline of HLSS to secondary school students, teachers, artists, or designers involved with Visual Arts.
How can the sharing of pupils own identity improve a broader cultural awareness
Tanya Mundell | Oxford Brookes University
Through this study I explore and present the outcomes of a small-scale study action research, based on the premise of determining how the sharing of pupils' own identity improves a broader cultural awareness. This question is in response to having recently attended an online learning platform with an internationally recognised British museum, where I was introduced to a network of culturally diverse works, objects, curators and exhibits, the event provided an array of polemic reflections. This process created many positive outcomes for me as an Artist and I am interested in developing this experience and process as an Artist Teacher. Investigating further the opportunity to share with my pupils, I will adapt the currently planned scheme of work thematic project; Identity to exercise more than meaning making and provide a foundation in which to examine the impact of developing the cultural awareness of pupils, within the safety of their own educational setting. The focus of the study is a small action research project, with the purpose in examining how a pupil’s cultural identity and that of their peers can be explored through the study and creating of Artistic outcomes, alongside the work of a museum led exhibition.
To see and to be seen: the importance of visual representation in secondary education
Emma Sutton | Canterbury Christ Church University
Throughout this paper I will explore the ways in which minority groups, such as those who identify as BAME, LGBTQIA+ and Neurodiverse, feel represented in terms of both the art and design classroom, but also across the wider secondary school environment. Exploring how the visual cues evident in a student’s day to day experiences of school life can create an environment which celebrates diversity, whilst also ensuring inclusivity. Bustle (2004) claims that ‘the term visual representation is used purposefully to include a wide range of visual meaning - making devices and symbols’ (2004:1). Through autoethnographic methods and semi - structured interviews with self-selecting students in minority groups, the ways in which visual meaning - making influences and impacts will be explored. Bustle also exclaims that ‘visual representations’ are ‘the most accessible, plentiful and powerful meaning - making devices in young people’s lives’ (2004: 8). Begging the question: how schools use visual representations to ensure that students are both see and feel seen? Art departments are often a place of refuge for those in minority groups, displays carefully curated and the meaning - making of symbols and signs negotiated in a way which encourages an open - minded approach, creating a safe and inclusive space.
Arts Council Collection: A Portrait of the Nation
Lala Thorpe | Arts Council Collection
How can the Arts Council Collection be culturally responsive? Currently the Arts Council Collection is developing ideas for presenting a comprehensive ‘history of the collection’. With this resource we are keen to garner wider perspectives, engagement and learning from the collections history, using its richness, relevance and to tell stories that educates, inspires and enlightens its audience and participants.
As Britain’s major national collection, it is unique among national collections as it lends to numerous public buildings across the UK, including schools, universities, hospitals and charitable associations. We also have an extensive programme of Touring exhibitions with museums and galleries across the UK and abroad.
It promotes British art and artists by acquiring their work at an early or critical stage in their career, with a focus on artists living in Britain, selected and purchased through a changing acquisitions committee. The Touring exhibitions programme responds to a wealth of themes, for example, the current ‘Breaking the Mould’ exhibition celebrates 75 years of women sculptors in the collection. The National Partners Programme over the past 6 years has proliferated many collaborations and exhibitions curated by youth and community groups working with the collection. It is through these community centred relationships and partnerships which help us to form a more culturally responsive collection.
Belonging Together: Culturally Responsive Art Pedagogy in K-16 Classroom
Ahran Koo | California State University, Fresno
As an immigrant teaching art education in a public university in the US, the presenter's own cultural transition from South Korea to the United States and interactions with her students, which consist of 90% of racial, ethnic, and/or economic minority backgrounds, expanded her understanding about sense of belonging and Culturally Responsive Education. Exploring the concepts, boundaries, and practices of diversity, inclusion, equity, and cultural identities with her K-16 students, she investigated the unique values and power of storytelling through art and connections with communities in art making.
Through the lens of culturally responsive pedagogy (Manifold et al., 2016; Gay, 2000; Ladson-Billings, 1995) and arts-based research/visual narrative (Barone & Eisner, 2012; Rolling, 2013), the presenter will share art curriculum and visual examples focusing on reexaminations of students’ own backgrounds, heritage, and lived experiences while disrupting and transforming existing educational structures and practices. Students’ reflections of how those activities helped them feel a sense of belonging in K-16 art classroom settings will also be discussed.
This presentation will help K-16 art educators and other art practitioners acquire empathy and knowledge on culturally responsive pedagogy and sensitivity to the socio-cultural context of a global community.
Breakout Room 4
Co-Creating Future Heritage: How the Museum Can Decolonise the Indonesian Graphic Design Higher Education
Michael Nathaniel Kurniawan | Universitas Ciputra Surabaya
Even after 75 years of independence, Indonesia is still bound by the influence of colonialism in a form of the occupation of the mind through economic and socio-cultural realms. Hesmondhalgh and Pratt (2005) describe how the global creative economy can be seen as a form of cultural invasions, through which dominant countries, such as America are exerting their political and ideological powers through popular cultures. This new form of soft power colonialism came into effect partly due to an education system that values Western culture above indigenous’ culture (Ashcroft et al., 2013). This is what the Indonesian visual communication design higher education is also struggling with. To counter it, the Visual communication Design undergraduate programme at Universitas Ciputra Surabaya created a cultural heritage museum as a design laboratory through which graphic design students were challenged to consciously create a new design that would be their future heritage. The evaluation of the practice-based learning process showed how a group of students became aware of the importance of learning about Indonesia’s past cultural heritage not only for design inspiration, but also as a mean to appreciate Indonesia’s diverse cultural heritage and its potential for the development their identity as Indonesian designer.
A Reflection on Dialogic Diving Boards and Decolonising School Art: The African Mask Project Problem
Will Grant, Malcolm Richards, Ros Steward & Jamie Whelan | The University of the West of England
In this presentation, four colleagues working in teacher education reflect on a conversation. The conversation in question was a tangible discussion documented through frequent and purposeful email exchange, exploring traditionalist school art curricula through reference to lived experience, academic theory, and professional anecdote. The primary objective of this Freirean dialogue was informal critical analysis of the cultural diversity and positioning of art objects that populate classroom curricula in English schools, starting with the ‘African mask’.
Curricula development in art departments can be slow, and the discipline has historically tended towards reproductive formalist orthodoxies (Cary 2011; Gude 2013; Grant 2020) - despite the potential benefits and possibility of diversifying the content taught in and through art. The secondary objective of this conversation was exploration of how complex talk on culture and curriculum might be modelled for teachers yet to consider why, and how, an inclusive subject curriculum might benefit them and their pupils.
Given current interest in curriculum content (Spielman 2017; Ofsted 2022), now is the moment for art teachers to exercise their autonomy and ensure the discipline transcends the melancholia of modernist projects (Atkinson 2011; Cary 2011), and instead takes agentic leadership in promoting contemporary cultural understanding and appreciation in English schools.
Making experience visible through art practice: the quest towards decolonial maps and knowledge
Michelle Olga van Wyk | Cape Peninsula University of Technology
Art practice is a form of knowledge that serves as a map towards decolonising the current art and design curriculums that exist in many African university classrooms. By placing the student artistic experience at the centre of the creative learning journey, rather than the desired skills for the exit level outcome, we begin to emphasise the emancipatory sphere of influence that each student has. This role, of being the core story maker, writer and teller, positions students towards finding obscured knowledge in their lived experience and expressing these in artistic practice. This paper follows a small group of final year visual art students at a university in southern Africa, and documents their journey from a dual stance; where the author documents the creative exploration as a record for reflection, and also as a lens to identify the story that often remains hidden from students (and other audiences), due to the nature of how knowledge has been framed in the past in African contexts for African audiences. The experiment aims to make visible the form of knowledge that may serve as an empowering tool in the important, sensitive work of decolonising art experiences in higher education.
Visual Redress: An approach to transformation at Stellenbosch University, South Africa
Gera de Villiers, Elmarie Costandius & Leslie van Rooi | Stellenbosch University
Universities across South Africa were called to accelerate transformation efforts during the country’s student protests of 2015-2016. One way that Stellenbosch University - a historically exclusive, white, and Afrikaans space - has attempted to work towards decolonisation and Africanisation is though the Visual Redress Project, whose aim is to change the visual landscape of the university’s campus. This project, in alignment with the Visual Redress Policy (2019), is focused on the removal or contextualisation of sensitive artwork or symbols, the introduction of new visual symbols with African centrality as an outcome, updating campus signage, the naming/renaming of buildings and spaces, and other such initiatives that endeavour to create a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable environment for all.
An investigation of the perceptions of students, staff, and lecturers to various visual redress initiatives undertaken on campus thus far provides an understanding of the correlation between the transformation of space and its perceived influence on learning and teaching. The project attempts to contribute to the discourse around the transformation of higher education in South Africa through a look into the ways that exclusion and injustice are found within Stellenbosch University’s visual landscape and how inclusivity could be achieved through its redressing.
Breakout Room 5
Opening up Opportunities: PGCE secondary art and design trainees' experiences of teaching pupils identified as having visual impairment in art education
Harriet Dunn | Liverpool John Moores University
PGCE trainees often feel less secure in their capability to develop appropriate learning opportunities for pupils with SEN (NCTL, 2016). My thesis, a qualitative study involving twenty-two PGCE secondary art and design trainees, explores experiences of working with pupils identified as having VI, through facilitating an art education project. The aim was to better prepare PGCE trainees for working with pupils identified as having visual impairment (VI). This paper focuses on one key aspect of my research, the transformative impact on PGCE trainees, when developing ideas around inclusion within the curriculum, during teacher education. The art education project could potentially enhance PGCE trainees’ knowledge and skills, not only when working with pupils identified as having VI but a range of SEN. This paper draws upon PGCE trainees’ reflections on their experiences of facilitating the art education project, highlighting the ways their perspectives have shifted over the one year period of the PGCE course. It will be established whether the opportunity to work with pupils identified as having VI can increase PGCE trainees’ knowledge and understanding to better support pupils’ needs. This research demonstrates one way in which universities and schools can work together, promoting a culturally responsive education in art and design.
Belonging through Assessment: Pipelines of Compassion
Vikki Hill, Laura DaCosta & Liz Bunting | University of the Arts London
This paper presents the QAA Collaborative Enhancement Project 2021 - Belonging through assessment: Pipelines of compassion. The project is a collaboration between University of the Arts London, Glasgow School of Art, and Leeds Arts University. The project began against the backdrop of pandemic and the team identified a shift in assessment practices across the three participating arts institutions and address social justice, belonging and inclusion through compassion.
The project aims to:
• Identify areas of enhancement in assessment policies and practices to promote student sense of belonging and tackle issues of social justice.
• Link this relational work with attainment gap/awarding differentials agendas in the creative arts.
• Develop collaborative, dialogic, polyvocal and affective resources for staff development across the HE sector.
The three research strands:
1. Pass/fail grading
2. Whole self: trauma-informed policies
3. Feedback (compassion and emotional impact)
Drawing on these strands, we share our research and resources to help universities reflect on their assessment policies and practices. We offer approaches to design these with compassion to meet students where they are at. Ultimately, these principles can be used to develop student belonging and more culturally responsive education in the creative arts.
Curriculum for "Belonging" through VR integrated STEAM
Kyungeun Lim & Soon Goo Lee | Kennesaw State University
While exploring common themes in STEAM and how to bring them into the classroom, we have discussed how educators from nondominant cultures can belong in the classroom of American universities and how students from diverse ethnic groups and cultures can feel belonging as well. Through our long journey to find the most appropriate compromises and solutions, we have confronted several challenges that required us to redefine our identities as Asian American scholars. By sharing our stories, we hope readers may learn how educators shape their identities and how to effectively encourage student belonging in learning communities within various cultural and ethnic environments. As effective methods to deliver our stories, this presentation utilizes microhistorical perspectives to discuss the virtual reality (VR)-mediated STEAM curriculum. Through our presentation, participants can learn how we designed our integrated curriculum so that every student could feel a sense of belonging and how we enhance minority students' education equity in science and art education areas.
Belonging, Support System, and Visual Art: Revisiting Adoption through the Work of JooYoung Choi
Borim Song | East Carolina University
Adoption is a topic that is rarely discussed in the art classroom. Greenway (2014) claimed that the issue of adoption is almost absent in the visual art field. My review of the art education literature corroborated this assertion; related sources were, in fact, scarce. However, I was able to find three Korean adoptee artists active in the international art scene - Megan Rye, Lisa Wool-Rim Sjöblom, and JooYoung Choi. Of these artists, this presentation introduces JooYoung Choi and examines how Choi’s work was used in my discussions of the issue of child adoption with my students at a south-eastern public university, who viewed her series, Cosmic Womb, as a support system full of characters feel a sense of belonging in there. Inspired by art educators who emphasized sharing their own stories of challenges and hardships (Chin, 2015; Rolling, 2010), this session will also include a story of my overcoming feelings of guilt. I will also highlight teaching strategies that are helpful in facilitating conversations about difficult social issues through contemporary art.