Dirty Practice Event 2018

Art School Today: Who cares?

Developing a culture of care within a disembodied institution

Short Residency and Symposium

Wolverhampton School of Art

25-29 June 2018.


Fine Art programmes have been increasingly embedded into large HE providers and forced to operate on restricted, generic, fragmented teaching models shaped by managerialism. As result, a division of services prevent students and staff from developing a meaningful relationship to the course and subject. Responding to an intensified economic crisis and academic demands around success, ‘clamorous individualism’ seems to eclipse any consideration for community, the other or one’s own well-being.   Indeed, the ‘academic turn’ in art education since the 1980s (Elkins, 2018, X) correlates with a putative lack and inability to think and talk together: ‘Splitting up of institutions, courses into modules, showing a lack of communication, link, institutional structures that do not allow any identification, nor do they have often a direct personal line for communication for reasons of efficiency’ (Isaacs, 1999).

This ‘high performance culture’ within the current educational system effaces any sense of care or ‘indebtedness’ to the other, yet this seems essential within art education.  As curator Jan Verwoert argues: ‘To practice a politics of dedication and recognise an indebtedness to the other as the condition of your own ability to perform means to acknowledge the importance of care’ (2007, 99).

In this context we define the need and notion of ‘care’ as a value often marginalised in the institutional debate, but essential to the long-term and sustained maintenance of a person, place or object. The verb ‘to care’ implies a level of altruism, a way of being in the institution that is intrinsically different to the ‘clamorous individualism’ and neo-liberal economic agenda. Care then, as has been argued, shows the potential to ‘overrule’ the economic demands (Verwoert 2017,99).


Programme (Symposium)

Art School Today: Who cares?

Fri 29 June 2018 | Arena Theatre | Wolverhampton School of Art

10.00 RegistrationTea/Coffee   

Maggie Ayliffe
Christian Mieves

Wolverhampton School of Art

Introduction/ Welcome
11.00 11.40

Dr Jenny Walden

Portsmouth University

Art Education and Art: it’s not what it is but what it does? 

Frederiek Bennema

Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Groningen.

Yes, we care! In an ecological arts pedagogy.
12.30- 12.50

Dr Atsuhide Ito

Solent University, Southampton

Epimeleia: Is an Art School a Military Academy II.
14.00 14.20

Jennifer Warren

University of the Arts London

Reinstating a politics of care (or how does the Art School eat and clean?)

Dr Dean Kelland

Wolverhampton School of Art

Falling Slowly.  

Roundtable discussion  

With Contributions from Resident artists including Jackie Sanderson, Rachel Magdeburg, Patricia Newell, Mac Mccoig, Lisa Metherell, Paul Scull.

Michael Brennand-Wood

Review of the day and thoughts beyond
16.00-30 Discussion
 Studio Residence Talks
27 June 2018,

Dr Robert Knifton

University of Leeds

The History of an Art School in 7 objects
28 June 2018,

Laura Onions

Wolverhampton School of Art 

Notes on Care.


Microsoft Word - Submission_Overview.docx

Download CFP


Network for ArtHistory 



An amazing turn out for tonight's #meetandgreet #cityofsanctury @lighthousemedia as part of #refugeeweek @wlv_uni @WLV_Arts also...spot the stork!


Come to the @lighthousemedia in #wolverhampton - #cityofsanctury this evening, 7pm, to meet and mingle for #refugeeweek Lots of great people, events and art will be there @wlv_uni @Eleanor_SmithMP @CounterArts @VCwlv_uni @CreativeBCuk


Head of Fine Art @FineArtWSA Christian Mieves delivering a paper on painting and 'not knowing' at Royal Academy yesterday @royalacademy #teachingpainting

TEACHING PAINTING : Painting the New. Conference 2018 19 /20 June image: MichaelStubbs KitPoulson CraigStaff @ehryntorrell MarkWright. @royalacademy https://t.co/DzlFsL7kuN

Good to appear before @CommonsCMS at @UKParliament today to discuss @ace_national support for social impact of participation in arts and culture with MPs including @DamianCollins @JulieElliottMP @chris_matheson @pow_rebecca @GilesWatling @IanCLucas @Simonhartmp @JoStevensLabour

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