The Artist Lens blog experience is curated by Molina Speaks, dedicated to Poetry, Image, Muse, Open Letters, and Profiles of artists and their work. If the digital age is to be all encompassing, let it be artful.
Intellectuals Interested in Post-Dystopian Post-Dichotomous Discussion, Discourse, and Dialogue to Determine a Different Destiny for Interconnected Intersectional Intergenerational Humanity and Harmony…
…this is actually an abbreviated title of this poetic reflection (jaja) – a live scribe piece derived from panels, workshops, lectures and conversations at the Bioneers Conference at CU Boulder on October 24th. There was a call and response audience participation portion which has been left out of this transcribing (appropriate for this medium of translation).
[Bioneers is a fertile hub of social and scientific innovators with practical and visionary solutions for the world’s most pressing environmental and social challenges]
I concluded Saturday’s conference proceedings with some poetry, spoken word, and live scribe musings.
Following is a guest blog by artist HK, who is an artist in the way she writes, plays piano, dances, and expresses all aspects of life. Following is a critical essay she shared with me about the relationship between arts and education, two aspects of life she is most passionate about. I asked her to share her writing with The Artist Lens. ~ Molina Speaks
Guest Blog: “The Uncomfortable Truth about Arts and Schools” by HK Artist and Educator
The arts have always been used during times of protest to tell a suppressed story. The arts are provocative and raise questions from even the most disengaged and timid. There is more to the story than budget cuts when it comes to the arts being removed from our schools. In search of the full story, we must be willing to be uncomfortable. We must be willing to seek out and listen to long-silenced voices within our system of education. Artists and underserved students know discomfort well. I say we must be willing to be uncomfortable because when we are uncomfortable we instinctively begin to seek relief. When the environment is right, this leads to questioning, collaboration, and eventually the creation of a new possibility.
I’ve coordinated, participated in and observed many artist residencies in schools. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about these experiences and the tension that often exists between the visiting teaching artist and the classroom teacher. I’ve seen residencies arranged with little to no planning, teaching artists placed in a room insufficiently sized for what they are trying to create with students, and artists left alone with very large groups of students they don’t know. During some incredible assemblies and performances in schools, I have found myself as the only adult (outside of the artist) in an auditorium of students. In these moments I wonder: Where did all the teachers go? Where is school leadership? Why isn’t anyone concerned that there might arise an issue that the teaching artist cannot manage alone? Most importantly perhaps, I wonder why none of the adults are interested enough to prioritize the time and/or stick with their students through a fresh, creative experience. (And yes, as someone who has always worked in schools, I understand that opportunities to “get work done” [without students] can feel few and far between).