thinking about art. education as a symptom
eremuak conference 2017. Azkuna Zentroa: Room CAC2 (Centre of Complementary Activities 2).
Participating in the sessions: Txomin Badiola, Ángel Bados, Bulegoa z/b, Capacete (Helmut Batista), Consonni, Jon Mikel Euba, L’Atelier de l’Observatoire (Mohamed Fariji), Mugatxoan, Laurence Rassel, Irit Rogoff. Also was screened the film Todos vós sodes capitáns by Oliver Laxe
Whether as mere observers or active participants, for some time we’ve been swept along by currents which give education centre stage in contemporary art. Interventions of all types, in universities, museums or art centres, or organised by the artists themselves — ranging from workshops, seminars and other offerings — explore and assess art’s education potential. At times, education is little more than a fashionable thematic resource, its transformative capacity neutralised by the inertia of methods of representation that align with its image, without ever embodying the very aspects of education which are extolled.
We believe that art is a tool for knowledge. It teaches us something in a specific way. Just showing up to an artistic event is educational in itself, beyond any explicitly pedagogical intentions, themes or content.
That said, we recognise that artistic practice is difficult to transmit. Art resists systematisation, and we’re faced with an abundance of worn-out models from past eras, and the expectation and drive for profits, all of which are miles away from the practice in itself.
In any case, the question is this: why is education becoming part of the story at this precise moment in time? Is education just another element or a truly intrinsic consideration in artistic practice? What is it a symptom of?
During the conference, we’ll seek answers to these questions by studying and discussing teaching experiences which put the spotlight on transmitting art, specifically artistic practice.