Class visits and lecture at Harvard

October 7, 2019

 Art, Design, and Learning in Public Spaces,  by Professor Steven Seidel .

I visited a Class of Prof. Steven Seidel as a Guest Artist at the Larsen Hall, 214, with other creative practitioners who are studying and experiment with the potential for engaged citizenship, lifelong learning, and social change through their work. We focused on the types and qualities of learning that can take place when interacting with art in public settings. Currently, this realm of work takes place in a space comprised of overlapping fields – contemporary art, public pedagogy, art education, community organizing, and more–working together (and in isolation) to push the boundaries of what art in public spaces can and should do. Yet, everyone engaged in this work encounters at least two fundamental challenges of learning–1. Capturing the attention of diverse individuals, and 2. Maximizing the benefits of their proximity to each other and the work/s of art to provoke curiosity, interaction, reflection, and, sometimes, action.

In short, to galvanize learning. In this course, we will explore this complex realm, investigating the planning, implementation, and assessment of these types of public art projects. We will interact with people engaged in this work and consider how it is understood within and across the fields of education, art, and design (among others), and what these fields can do to inform one another. Through readings, public art experiences, conversations with artists and those responsible for the sites of public art, we will explore what it means to design and analyze arts learning in public, as well as challenge existing parameters of that work.

HIGHLIGHT OF MY VISIT TO MIT  : Meeting with Noam Chomsky 

Meeting with the Harvard Divinity students was a wonderful meditation in action. Empathic and compassionate conversation erupted when they requested for white butterflies to be delivered to their communities back home.  After my talk session, students randomly decided to do an art installation of white butterflies in their department. . The inherent joy and spontaneity  coursed through  this act and  re-affirmed my tendencies to experience daily activities without resisting its natural flow

 

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