LECTURE: Jonathan Owen Clark: What are Art Schools For?


Jonathan Owen Clark: What are Art Schools For?

Friday, 27 May 2016 

17.15, AGRFT (big lecture room), Nazorjeva 3, Ljubljana

This talk will seek to accomplish two things. Firstly it examines how the discipline of critical pedagogy interfaces directly with the “art school”, broadly construed as those small specialist institutions providing training in music, fine art, drama, dance, and design. This first section will explore how neoliberalist policy within higher education has directly and adversely impacted such institutions. Secondly, the talk will seek to show conversely how these same institutions have a unique, perhaps autonomous role in not only shaping discourses within critical pedagogy, but also raising awareness of the ethical and societal imperative for a return to an “aesthetic education”. I will argue that it is correct, as others have, to situate this type of aesthetic pedagogy within a framework of aesthetic experience, the expansion of perceptual awareness, and the changes in a person's worldview that this expansion affords. But it is vital that an aesthetic education also addresses the specifically political dimensions of perception. Art, and art schools in particular, can be the centre of a utopian pedagogy which affords the possibility of the subversion and transformation of what in society comes to be perceivable in the first place, and in doing so, provide perturbations to what one leading proponent of critical pedagogy has termed “distributions of the sensible”.

Dr. Jonathan Owen Clark is an artist and academic with research interests in philosophical aesthetics, cultural and critical theory, the philosophy of history and historiography, performance and dance studies, and musicology. He is currently Head of Research at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London (UK), where he leads several research programs in aesthetics and creative practice.

The lecture (held in English) is co-organized by DUM Association of Artists, Igor Zabel Association for Culture and Theory, and AGRFT - Academy of Theatre, Radio, Film, and Television, University of Ljubljana.

This lecture is part of accompanying programme of the HOW ART MATTERS. AND HOW IT MEANS. conference coorganized with DUM.