Summary of Draft PROPOSALS

Where does arts education happen?

This event will critically engage with current debates in arts education, while insuring that a historical perspective remains stimulus for current critical investigation into this highly debated topic. Our discussion will focus on different spaces and socio-cultural contexts in which arts education in the UK was and is currently embedded. Thereby we will focus on arts education in relation to social class, artistic autonomy and the emergence of different pedagogic spaces. This will allow for a contextual debate on the value, structure and philosophy of arts education, which leads to further discussion on its relevance within a creative industries agenda that favours commercial practices rather than strong artistic positions. Thereby we will jointly investigate new perspectives for the “survival” of art schools and independent pedagogic initiatives, which includes questioning existing institutional structures, funding systems and professional development trajectories.

Human Library

The New Terms ‘Human Library’ provides an opportunity to share radical education experiences and opinions, by means of private conversations which take place in a safe and comfortable environment. Individuals identify themselves as human ‘books’ with a specific ‘title’, in order to be ‘read’ by a member of the public. For example, Disgruntled Art Teacher might wish to discuss aspects of their work in the classroom. Disgruntled Student likewise. These ‘books’ might be members of the group, or other interested volunteers.

When is Art?

Crafting a trans-discursive response: This dynamic, participatory workshop opens an (inter)space for trans-discursive dialogue in response to the question, When is Art? In a play environment, participants collage post-consumer waste (the spillage of collective cultural identity) into ubiquitous ‘like’ symbols, considering art as a way of looking at the world. Summarising their (shared) responses to indicate whether they believe they are engaged in Art altogether. A large wall ‘results chart’ acts as Visual Document to this relational pedagogical praxis, whilst inviting it’s own appropriation as Art, by questioning Institutional art validation within this very context.

The Democratic table

Children learn to enact democracy by sitting down to a family meal, night after night after night. The collective table is a means of survival, a form of vulnerable existence, and an instantiation of community. The Democratic table performatively stages a participatory learning experience – food preparation, eating, and conversing – to investigate how shared culinary encounters can create alternative (radical?) spaces for affective education. “Democracy has been described as four wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch.”

Cutting up theory

Using William S Burroughs cut-up techniques, collage and other anti-narrative strategies to investigate how we position ourselves within race, gender, class struggles within the the arts education curriculum, and its canons-and beyond. Reflecting on conscious and unconscious experiences, by organising a dialogue between people of different backgrounds and histories.

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