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Title:Art education in art museums: Curriculum, policy, and culture
Author(s):Young, Ruth Whitelaw
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Bresler, Liora
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Art
Fine Arts
Abstract:The purpose of this study was to examine the practice of art education in one art museum as evidenced in its curriculum and policy, and the relationships between these and the public dimension of art museum education, that is, its educational mission to a culturally diverse public. A qualitative case study approach was used to investigate the complexities of art museum education practice at Laguna Gloria Art Museum in Austin, Texas.
Results of the study reveal that the art museum education curriculum examined has an essentially two-fold focus. While the curriculum content is object-centered in that it is based on the art objects the museum exhibits, the interpretive theories and instructional strategies adopted by art museum educators are audience-centered. A dilemma arises which lies in striking a balance between the two such that one focus does not predominate over the other to the extent that the quality of the aesthetic experience in the art museum is undermined.
An examination of art museum education practice within the context of institutional priorities reveals that while attempts are being made by the museum studied to integrate curatorial and educational functions and thereby place increasing emphasis on education as a museum-wide endeavor, the responsibility for art museum education rests essentially with art museum education staff in the museum. A tension exists between the educational purposes of the museum and other purposes of the museum.
A study of an art museum education program also raises problems and possibilities concerning museums' interpretations of what it means to reflect cultural diversity and promote a sense of "inclusive community" through its exhibitions and educational programs. An examination of one art museum education curriculum suggests possibilities beyond the representation and inclusion of diverse cultures in terms of the content of exhibitions and programs; it suggests that the aesthetic orientation and ways of thinking and understanding of diverse cultures be taken into consideration also in the development of the art museum education curriculum.
Issue Date:1995
Rights Information:Copyright 1995 Young, Ruth Whitelaw
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9543783
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9543783

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