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Friday, December 10 • 10:00am - 11:00am
🔴 Contemporary Art & Open Learning: An OER for Artistic Paragogy

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I will present a new global model for art education rooted in peer-to-peer perspectives (paragogy) augmented by open edutech. I will draw on examples of learning experiments produced by prosumers (based in Scotland, Canada and China) working within a new open educational resource over 2020-21.

Intentional art education today takes diverse organisational forms: traversing small artist-led initiatives, international biennials, art academies and artistic practices. Artistic learning is porous and ubiquitous: it is lifewide: discovered through a wide variety of formal and informal arts contexts. It follows that artistic learning is not restricted to art academies, nor is it the sole preserve of recent school leavers.

Until the pandemic pivot, there have been few virtual communities of artistic learners. Now, we can no longer assume that art education will be a distinctly ‘live’, embodied experience.

How might art education catalyse the post-Covid recovery by engaging with emerging educational practices such as the open paradigm (Winn 2015), paragogy (Corneli 2011, 2016) and para-academia (Wardrop 2014)?

To partly address these issues, I will reflect on a new course I have created in 2020-21 in collaboration with my colleagues Dr Jake Watts, Dr Emma Balkind and Beth Dynowski at Edinburgh College of Art.

Contemporary Art & Open Learning is an open educational resource (OER https://blogs.ed.ac.uk/macat/contemporary-art-open-learning-course-handbook-semester-1) that enables colleagues and art students to open access to artistic learning by peer-producing, codifying and sharing their own learning practices. In Edinburgh College of Art, it functions as a 10 ECTS ‘foundation course’ for taught postgraduate students transitioning into art practice from cognate disciplines. The OER practises a range of peer-based theories of learning and knowledge production to extend open access beyond the communal Third Places (Oldenburg 1999) frequently produced by artists. In particular, it experiments with ‘paragogics’, learning principles that offer a flexible framework for peer learning adaptable to any given context. Embracing the Open Paradigm’s vision of education as a human right might better equip formal art education organisations – such as art schools, workshops and galleries – to fulfil UNESCO’s right to participate in cultural life. However, we must also remember that cultural life is fermented formally and informally. Working together, foundational OERs and people can catalyse the recovery by forming symbiotic colonies of artistic learning and, thus, new artworlds.

avatar for Professor Neil Mulholland

Professor Neil Mulholland

Chair of Contemporary Art Practice & Theory, Edinburgh College of Art, The University of Edinburgh
Prof Neil Mulholland is Chair of Contemporary Art Practice & Theory at Edinburgh College of Art, The University of Edinburgh. His research and learning interests in paragogy and weirding coorespond with three inter-related corporations (Confraternity of Neoflagellants, Shift/Work... Read More →

Friday December 10, 2021 10:00am - 11:00am UTC
Green Room Zoom Breakout
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