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Title:A look at community-based art education through multiple lenses: the potentials of empowerment and advocacy through the arts
Author(s):O'Connor, Jennifer
Director of Research:Delacruz, Elizabeth M.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Delacruz, Elizabeth M.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Parsons, Michael J.; Hogin, Laurie; Lucero, Jorge
Department / Program:Art & Design
Discipline:Art Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
art education
community-based art education
social capital
multicultural art education
social change
Abstract:Through multiple case studies, this study investigates community-based art education through three different perspectives: a provider, a student, and two artists. My motivation was my experiences working as a visual arts coordinator, instructor, and curator at a non-profit community-based art education program. Borrowing from Friere (2010), hooks (1994), and Ladson-Billing’s (1995) belief that a fundamental human right is access to engaging, dialogical and critical pedagogical experiences, I argue that access to meaningful and engaging art education is a democratic right. To provide an expansive ideation of community-based art education, I identify and describe various kinds of contemporary community-based art programs in their various sites, practices, audiences, orientations. I explore the potential these programs may provide in terms of opportunities for art learning to students who may not have such opportunities within schools and facilitating community building through programming and a place for community members to gather and engage in creative activities of mutual interest. Using social capital as a framework, I look at the potential these programs provide in terms of opportunities for students to not only develop artistic skills and practices, but to develop relationships that will help students navigate a professional life, and to envision a life trajectory where these skills may be applied. In order to understand the sustained or in-depth engagement, I examine these experiences through a sense of belonging (Rowe, 2005) and Winnicott (1971) and Ellsworth’s (2005) concept of transformational experiences. Through protracting our conceptualization of art education and embracing the possibilities that exist outside of or in partnership with K-12 schools, access to meaningful art education experiences can create a path of life-long learning through engagement with the arts.
Issue Date:2014-09-16
Rights Information:Copyright 2014 Jennifer O'Connor
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-09-16
Date Deposited:2014-08

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