Click here to download a PDF version of the Parallel Session programme for Saturday 12 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
Online, synchronous, visual art workshops in primary schools located in remote areas of mainland and islands of Greece
Lydia Petropoulou | University of Nicosia
Art should be an integral element of the teaching curriculum made accessible to all students; however, it has been relegated in the Greek educational system. Considering the above and the lack to support an art teacher in primary schools located in remote areas of Greece, the researcher, created and implemented online, synchronous, visual art workshops for the students at these schools for the first time in the Greek educational context, since 2019. The purpose of the activity is to enable students who live far away from urban centres, to get in touch, get involved and reap the benefits of visual arts. The research paper examined whether online, synchronous, visual art workshops in primary schools located in remote areas of mainland and islands of Greece contribute to the cognitive, emotional, and social development of students, as well as the difficulties in their implementation. T he data was collected by a semi-structured interview with the teacher of one of the four primary schools in which the online art workshops were realized.
What did you find out? The tutorial as interview
Joanna Neil | The Manchester College and University Centre
Recent doctoral research gained insight into creative making processes to gauge the potential and impact of using digital autoethnography as a range of technical tools, spaces, and strategies to make reflection more visible for the artist/designer and wider audiences. Digital autoethnography was used as a research method and pedagogical approach. On completion data were gathered through unstructured phenomenological interviews with undergraduate participants. This presentation focuses on a pedagogic approach to the tutorial with FE and HE undergraduate students: The tutorial as interview.
Framing the tutorial as a recorded interview affords dialogue and reflection that focusses on the student doing most of the talking. It prompts students to share their experiences, perceptions, and interpretations through describing, explaining, expanding, recalling, and reflecting in-the-moment. This enables them to speak freely and evidence the shifting relationship they have to their practices, emerging professional identities, and their own social, cultural, and political contexts. Approaching the tutorial as an interview to elicit more critical reflection and sharing these recordings with students has been effective. The annotation of work submitted for assessment uses extracts from transcribed responses from the ‘interviews’ which students have further reflected on. The interviews have become a much-requested form of empowered dialogic self-assessment.
Risk-taking - a post-qualitative research project exploring rule-breaking in key stage four art and design
Josh Reid | University of Cambridge
Art education has long been besieged by problematic orthodoxical practices as they detract from the quality of education to pander to external pressures such as assessment and middle-class notions of cultural capital. I was keen to create a project that would dismantle the reproductive, homogenous, repetitive nature of these school art orthodoxies and provide students with a more authentic, meaningful art education that would enable them to enter a dialogue with their world. I created a scheme of work which introduces speculative pedagogy and dialogic, democratic teaching and learning methods to explore a pedagogy that would create the conditions for new ways of thinking and making in KS4. Post-qualitative inquiry was chosen as it rejects the repetitive and homogenous. I present my findings and the conditions for new ways of thinking that emerged through my move away from methodology and pedagogy that reinforce orthodoxical practice in favour of thinking dialogically through a post-expression/post-creative theory and speculative pedagogy. These conditions for new ways of thinking present a starting point for improving the provision of art education and inclusivity by moving away from the formulaic and repetitive in favour of the new, the unintelligible, the yet-to-be-thought, and the authentic.
Knowledge, reason and art history in the art and design curriculum
Neil Walton | Goldsmiths, University of London
In the past few years new and compelling educational theories have been advanced about knowledge and the curriculum. The sociologist Michael Young has written about the powerful knowledge that emerges from a strong relationship between disciplines and school subjects (Young 2014). Jan Derry has drawn on inferential role semantics to show how subject specific concepts and knowledge depend on distinctively human practices of reasoning (Derry 2020). A t the same time, as a subject community within art and design, we have been more comfortable discussing pedagogy while perhaps seeing knowledge as connected with the imposition of rigid subject content. As Mark Londesborough has put it, ‘knowledge is a dirty word for many art educators’ (Londesborough 2018). In this paper I will make a case for the centrality of art historical knowledge within the art and design curriculum, challenging a representationalist conception of what knowledge is and advocating an inferentialist approach which highlights continuities between artistic making and reasoning as a skilful practice - the game of giving and asking for reasons. The paper addresses the conference themes in addressing knowledge and the curriculum and also art practice as a form of knowledge.
Breakout Room 2
Centring children’s stories as a way of challenging dominant narratives in the art museum
Maddy Gilliam | University of Nottingham
The COVID pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement of 2020 significantly disrupted Tate galleries, bringing into question its purpose and forcing it to confront racist and colonial legacies continuing to shape the current organisation. During the academic year 2020/21, the Schools and Teachers team at the London Tate Galleries developed a series of digital resources that aimed to centre children’s voices and experiences alongside an audio work in Tate Britain. The resource, called Hear My Story, encouraged children to explore their own family histories and cultural backgrounds, to use playful and experimental ways of making art and to tell their own stories. As part of the Year 3 legacy, all participating schools were invited to participate.
This paper explores how the project challenged dominant narratives in the art museum. Concurrently, the narratives operating in Tate were slowly changing - how could children’s voices generate further change? Children responded with creative artwork that told their own stories and celebrated the value of these stories. However, whilst promoting children’s stories made the art museum more relevant, the status of the S&T team and organisational challenges of working during this period, meant that the impact of the children’s voices was muted.
Anti Racism and Anti Ableism through Craft Learning
Rebecca Goozee & Zoe Dennington | Crafts Council
The Crafts Council’s national education programme Craft School: Yinka’s Challenge works towards an anti-racist and anti-ableist approach to craft making practices in the classroom, drawing on by the anti-racist art education curriculum checklist.
Craft School is underpinned by craft education pedagogy Make First. Putting materials directly into the hands of children and young people, Make First is an open-ended process of playful making and exploration; it puts children and young people in control of what they make and how they make it, and helps them discover their voice as craftspeople. A learner-driven approach, it creates space for children to bring their whole selves into the classroom, engaging with wider cultural influences, histories and communities.
Drawing on learner and teacher responses to the challenge, our paper will explore what we've learned from about how a learner-centred approach and focus on diverse creative responses can support decolonisation in the art, craft and design classroom.
As we move into the second year of Craft School, we'll share plans for building on this work through co-design with teachers and how we intend to use that learning to wider the conversation for anti-racism and anti-ableism in education provisions, examination specification and national curriculums.
PhEminist Skins of Resistance: inspiring transformative pedagogies of hope
Clare Stanhope | Centre for Creative Explorations, Harris Girls' Academy East Dulwich
Through critical engagement with the materiality of learning, this paper explores how life drawing can be re-imagined as a tool to diffract heteronormative and raced colonial imaginings of the female body. I share a project conducted in my school that sought to decolonise the legacy of the female nude, and more specifically the skin, to support the empowerment of the young women artists who populate the classrooms in which I teach. Theoretically informed by phEmaterialism (Ringrose, Renold, Hickey-Moody & Osgood: 2015) and specifically the work of Braidotti (2013), Haraway (2016) and Barad (2003), material agency is positioned as vital to an embodied learning experience. I explore how (re)viewing the skin as a morphing post human assemblage not only supported a diffraction of historical female imagery, but also offered an opportunity to reimagine contemporary learning spaces. Activated through creative practice, and the intra-action of bodies, both human and non-human, spaces for intra-activism (Renold and Ringrose: 2019) can be ignited. What I explore in this paper is how the power of such learning environments reach out beyond the constraints of neo-liberal educational structures and inspire transformative pedagogies of hope (Hooks: 1994).
Breakout Room 3
Belonging in the adult community learning art and design classroom
Abbie Cairns | Norwich University of the Arts
This paper will explore how artist-teachers within an adult community learning (ACL) context connect art and design curricula to adult learners. ACL is comprised of “community-based... learning opportunities... delivered by local authorities and general further education colleges” (DoE 2019).
ACL provides accredited and non-accredited adult learning predominately to learners ages 19+. ACL has qualities that set it apart from other educational sectors, with classes on average lasting two hours a week (Young, 2008:117). Additionally, there is an emphasis on flexibility in terms of content taught. This allows artist-teachers to adapt courses "to suit the needs of the group” (Department for Business Innovation and Skills, 2013:33).
The paper will show how artist-teachers in ACL can deliver a culturally responsive education within the art and design classroom to create a sense of belonging for their adult learners. Adult learners come from diverse backgrounds, including “those who have previously missed out” on education due to “social (and individual) disadvantages” (The Centenary Commission on Adult Education, 2019:7, 57).
This paper draws upon interview data from 17 artist-teachers in ACL, data were collected within a grounded theory approach. These findings are part of a wider research project into the identity of artist-teachers in ACL.
Unravelling Tacit Participation Strategies of Arts Education via Game Mechanics
Elvira Crois & Free De Backer | Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Studies show that participation in arts projects especially contributes to a sense of belonging when people feel they can make a difference to the project and their environment and thus have a strong sense of agency. While the benefits of participatory arts for a sense of agency are recognised, the inherent characteristics of participatory strategies to achieve agency remain unknown. This study offers a deeper understanding of these tacit strategies by looking at game mechanics through the work of British game-based theatre collective Coney. Since 2016, Coney has been developing a practice of arts education under the moniker ‘playful activism’ in which they use game mechanics for the purpose of social change. Through participant observation, we noted how Coney’s practice feeds learners’ growing sense of agency. By playing games, asking questions and providing opportunities to renegotiate the game rules, Coney reveals the mechanics underlying participatory processes. By analysing Coney’s game-based arts education, we uncover tacit participation strategies that give learners a sense of agency and, by extension, a sense of belonging in their social environment.
Turning to Trans-professionalism: inquiry though arts education
Anne Pässilä, Allan Owens, Lasse Kantola, Kaisa Vihreälehto & Janina Kuparinen | LUT University & University of Chester, RECAP
In Finish society vulnerable people have the right to have their voices heard, but how does a researcher connect with vulnerable citizens she does not know in order-to inquire their views? This case study considers the challenges faced by one researcher, that led to a trans-professional approach with arts education at the core of the inquiry. T his took the form of a collaboration between Theatrum Olga situated in a vocational education college and Olkkari, a community centre for people with special needs. The purpose of Olkkari is to promote the conditions for people with a disability to live and work as an equal member of their community and wider society. Theatrum Olga uses the arts as an integral part of students’ education to become Youth and Community Practitioners and develop their skills to use arts pedagogy in their own future work. The design of the arts pedagogical process is presented, not as an unproblematic model but rather to reflect on how this was achieved through a trans-professional arts education approach. The methodology used is autoethnography articulated in essay form.
Breakout Room 4
Art and design education in Scottish Primary Schools: a teacher’s perspective
Anna Robb | University of Dundee
Art education research in the United Kingdom predominantly represents England; with different education systems in place in the different nations, this is problematic. Additionally the ever-changing UK political landscape highlights the differences between the four nations further; for example the issue of independence is to the fore and young people aged 16 and over have the right to vote in Scottish Parliament elections and referendums. We therefore have a responsibility to support children and young people as they explore these issues in addition to their own sense of identity and place in the world. Art and design education can play a key role here. In Scotland however the value and identity of the subject is currently difficult to determine, due to the limited research specifically concerning art education in Scottish schools. This paper will begin to address this by focusing on the findings from a survey of Scottish primary teachers undertaken in May 2022, ascertaining their thoughts about current art and design education in Scottish primary schools and setting this against the wider Scottish research context. It will also identify future research and practice needs in this area.
Curating Street Culture: Lesson Learned in Advocacy and Education
G. James Daichendt | Point Loma Nazarene University
The concept of street culture emerged in the 1920s and has slowly developed into a studied and acknowledged way of understanding the experiences of our urban environments. The artistic products of street culture in California include but are not limited to graffiti, street art, tattoos, lowriders, Kustom Kulture, pin-striping, surfing, fashion (streetwear), breaking, and skateboarding. While some of these subcultures have become assimilated into mainstream culture, others have remained primarily practiced within the urban neighborhoods of California.
This session reviews an exhibition I co-curated that featured nearly 100 artists from Southern California street culture within a local museum. Specifically, it’s the civic advocacy and education that was required to represent these social worlds that were drastically different from the historical status quo. Initially there was an incredible outpouring of support for the show yet there was also fierce controversy, censorship, local politics, and protests that highlighted the real challenges we face as culturally responsible curators and educators. The steps taken to educate audiences why issues of diversity, inclusion, power, and race are important concepts will be reviewed to document what worked when a local community is not ready to engage in the deep-seated issues that art is able to deliver.
Extending the Relevancy of Contemporary Artwork: The Venice Biennale as Present Authority?
Rachel Daichendt | Institute of Doctoral Studies in the Visual Arts
The Venice Biennale represents countries from all over the world, artists commissioned to interpret a theme- this year "The Milk of Dreams," obtained from a children's book by Surrealist artist Leonora Carrington. With many exhibits becoming increasingly abstract, visitors feel disassociated or frustrated, relying on a manual as a way of connecting to the work.
In a postmodern acceptance of the visual encounter, does contemporary art offer viewers diverse ways in determining context? Or is it through a multi sensory experience, an artist's statement, or perhaps a hermeneutical exchange? Given this presumption, and using the above techniques, the viewer can gain authority over a work, creating a dialogue that is relevant to all learners.
This session will highlight specific pavilions, using a phenomenological and hermeneutical approach, and determine when and why certain artists appear more successful than others. When does knowledge of a specific region, culture, use of medium become essential to the theme and the space? Ultimately determining how to extend the relevancy of contemporary art while embracing the abstractness, the learner will engage and respond to current transformative artwork.