1 Open Call, 21 Proposals, 5 Reflections, 3 Platforms

Editorial Board

1. A sincere thank you to everyone who responded to our Open Call!

With these reflections the editorial board wants to express a sincere thank you to everyone who has responded to our Open Call. We have received 21 proposals and feel honored that students, teachers as well as workshop specialists teamed-up and shared their thoughts and ambitions with us. The 21 proposals present a substantial collection of visions for a future of (art) education.

With these reflections we want to present a synopsis, highlight trends and share aspects we have signaled in the 21 proposals, as well as announce the 3 proposals we have selected. The editorial board feels proud and humble and will focus on facilitating these 3 new initiatives, as well as looking for ways to encourage and possibly support the other proposals in another manner.

2. Future Pedagogies

The editorial board expressed a wish for new ways of educational collaboration in its Open Call: cross-departmental teams of students and teachers as well as alliances between departments and workshops. Many of the proposals we received indicated an urge for a more non-hierarchical and collaborative ways of working together, for instance by students educating students. Some expressed a wish to investigate structures within the academy from a perspective of refusal, others focused on relationality and the notion of care. Nine proposals were solely student-driven.

3. Future Collaborations

While some focused on the space between the bachelor and the master programs, others looked forward to explore the possibilities between departments and workshops, to see what kind of education could and should emerge in the spaces in between. Students from several departments found each other in their shared interest or working method. A number of proposed core-groups is already actively working together. A few groups proposed external partners, expressing their wish to bring new expertise into the Rietveld/Sandberg community. Together the 21 proposals present a rich and impressive network of contacts and partners, surrounding the Gerrit Rietveld Academie as its omnipresent center.

4. Art Academy Reimagined

The 21 responses to the Open Call not only visualize proposals for new ways of (art) education, they also express ways to reimagine the role of the academy. While 2020 made us all miss the Rietveld, Benthem Crouwel and FedLev building, we received a research-proposal investigating the academy as an organism, focusing on the many relationships within the academy architecture and between different actors. Others expressed the need to leave the academy building and work outside to investigate the garden or to see what collaborations would emerge if a group of students and teachers will collectively live and make a temporary base in an external location. To some the (imagined) campus is a welcoming space to invite others, and involve (precarious) groups that are not (yet) familiar to art education. A couple of initiatives expressed surprisingly 2020-proof ways of sharing and connecting, via podcast series or audio live streams.

5. Future Materials and Technology

Many of the initiatives proposed to work with reading groups, and some included extensive lists of literature. In other proposals the editorial board read a clear urge for the physical act of creating, and specializing in specific techniques. Whether it be working with plastics, sound, analogue electronics, there is an urge to work with materials that are currently not represented in current departments or workshops. A couple of initiatives connect these materials to larger questions regarding ecology or care. Five proposals focused on embodiment, either on the social role of the body, on performance workshops or on theory classes on embodiment or disorientation. The editorial board received two proposals that both offered a critical perspective on technology.

The editorial board has selected 3 platforms that will start in January 2021:

What will a post-covid academia look like?

A proposal by the Garden Department, a collaboration of 6 students, 2 teachers and 1 alumna.
The proposal takes the outside space of the Gerrit Rietveld Academie as its ground to organize a permaculture design course, external workshops and talks, internal workshops, seminars and reading groups, as well as possibility for all members of Rietveld/Sandberg community to practice gardening. Via weekly group and bi-semester public meetings activities are evaluated and they continue to publish a garden zine documenting our activities – plantings, garden tips, gardening techniques, recipes and related student art and poetry. The proposal connects to topics such as relationality, commons and ecology.

Writing Classes

This is a student-driven platform that wants to work with writing and text. Students from several departments (VAV, TXT and Fine Arts) have teamed up: Isabel Wang Pontoppidan; Jimena Casas; Shifra Osorio Whewell and Loïc Vandam. Initiators propose to organize a series of student gatherings, workshops and lectures where students from all corners of the Rietveld community can meet and investigate different approaches to the use of text in their practice. The goal of this platform is, through a communal practice and space, to articulate the voice of the artist/designer. They aim to open up the often insular practice of working with text; to share with others and cultivate a space for collectivity and feedback; a body of many different voices germinating in discourse. Final results will be a publication and an exhibition or event focusing on performance.

Recipes for a Technological Undoing

This is a proposal for a tutor-student (Flavia Dzodan and Ladipo Famodu) driven platform focusing on techno-determinism and Future Pedagogy. The platform invites students to work across disciplines to generate new understandings of how artists and designers can combat techno-determinism. The program consists of lectures and workshops. The individual and collective findings will culminate in the publication of a book. The Recipe Book will include reflections on our teaching strategy in our attempt to accomplish the aforementioned goals. It will include documentation and descriptions of the sketch-objects created, along with as interviews and quotes from guest speakers.

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