Art + humanism + societal change

The Italian Renaissance (1400-1600 A.D.) was a period of monumental cultural and social change. The movement saw the resurgence of humanistic values, a philosophy that focused on the potential and possibilities of humanity in shaping the structures, beliefs and activities of society as opposed to a reliance on Christian doctrine. Religious beliefs were not entirely dismissed. Rather, the worth and value…

Family learning at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park (UK)

This post features an interview with Emma Spencer, Family Learning Coordinator at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park (UK).  The Yorkshire Sculpture Park sits upon 500 acres of jolly green parkland that an Australian who has never visited rural England may be pitifully excited to see. The open-air gallery won the 2014 Art Fund Prize for Museum of…

Learning with Serpentine – Interim Report

This is a repost from the Centre for Research in Arts, Creativity and Literacies (CRACL) blog. The original post was written by Pat Thomson, Professor of Education within the School of Education, University of Nottingham (UK).  We have been conducting an evaluation of learning in the Serpentine’s World without Walls programme. We have just reported on our…

What it was like to leave my full-time job, sell my belongings & move to the other side of the world.

This month marks one year since I arrived in England. The title of this blog is misleading in that it is dramatising something that really was not such a big thing. Moving countries or cities is never easy but the process is broken down into such small steps that the change is not as overwhelming as…

PhD data collection… day one

Tomorrow is a big day. I have my cameras charged. My consent forms printed. My clipboards are sitting in my backpack. A giant paper roll to display pedagogical documentation is rolled up next to the front door. This comes on top of months of reading, thinking and discussing the literatures, conceptual foundations, data collection methods…

Art museums as creative laboratories for children’s play, experimentation and the co-construction of culture

This is a re-post of an article I wrote for the American gallery education website Art Museum Teaching. It features a brief outline of my practice as a children's curator and current PhD research. The original version of the article can be found here.  Art museums have not traditionally been sites for children’s creative experimentation and…

Vygotsky on collective creativity & the power of imagination

This post discusses collective creativity, its interconnection with imagination and the potential both of these offer in relation to a pursuit towards empathy and understanding between people. These concepts are not new. Maxine Greene, John Dewey and Elliot Eisner have all discussed them extensively. In this post I will focus upon an article written by the late social constructivist Lev Vygotsky titled 'Imagination and Creativity…