School#education #idea #manifesto
Excerpts from a letter, describing a possible school.
✍ Pedagogical Adventurers Required
The following describes a school.
(Hopefully the basis of this description has been explained already)
The school will provide a two semester cycle for all students. These operate as follows:
First semester: Student. Participation in all classes is expected.
Second semester: Professor delivering a class and participating in colleagues classes.
Following this the professors are thrown from the asylum to make way for the new methods and subjects of learning. It is crucial to the development of the school that this inbuilt process of revolution takes place. Involvement with the school can still continue for former students/professors (and maybe we will all be either professors or students) through access to the class material through the website.
The website is imagined as the physical hub of the school. It will be central to providing content and facilitating applications.
It is hoped that students and faculty will comprise of bodies around the world, not necessarily bound by geographic proximity. Classes will be delivered often online with collaborative learning, discussion and development through group video chat. Any documentation or course material should be made available through the online archive for both students and the public to access.
The main aim of the school is to provide a platform for learning that is less afflicted by any individual idea or hope, and united through open access to a wealth of ideas and hopes.
- Critical dialogues.
- Educational discovery.
- Alternate realities, new histories.
Application and Population
Applications to the school will be open continuously. These will be collected in a central database. During their first semester each student may select one applicant they deem appropriate for admission the following semester.
The anticipated population would be about 10 faculty + 10 students. Or 20 Students. Or 20 faculty. (dependent on eventual terminology)
Money and the school
There should be some guidelines on how the school works within gallery/institutional settings. This is based on the assumption that these kind of places might be interested in talking to us or using our pedagogical adventures within their program. It’s my initial belief that such inclusion is probably good. Participation should be remunerated though. This should be in form of an artist fee/bursary plus expenses.
A school fund should be created to collect donations and any profit from publications, events, generous benefactors etc. This should assist maintenance of the website and open up the possibility of an online exhibition program or student scholarships. Exactly how this would all pan out is naturally very vague. It should remain so. We are trying to establish a framework, from which we can be thrown and the next year of students can continue and develop with as much freedom as possible.
It might be appropriate to apply for funding specifically for any of the ideas above.
When I began drafting this letter it was in the form of a draft manifesto. The school will develop according to initial parameters. Like most manifestos it was couched in an appeal to humour. The setup was that the school was a physical entity, an organisation based in the old Board of Education building located on a New York City map c. 1879. In reality this lot is now empty, possibly a car park, so such pseudo-occupation seems possible. I’m just not sure how I feel about it’s sticky irony and whether it distracts from the actual potential. Like all of this I’m just trying to describe some initial ground from which we can form the school.
I still feel strongly that part of this initial development would need to be the formulation of a set of parameters which can exist autonomously. One element I’m particularly concerned about is how decisions are made as the school develops. I feel naturally that it would be good for things to develop semester to semester by committee with all students taking part, I’m just wary of the numbers and how this could work in reality.
All this has been imagined so far as being in dialogue with contemporary art. Much of the thinking is derived from completing art school and being involved with artist groups. However, these are all terms that are up for debate.