Celebrating our Legacy: Talking About Visual Arts Education at the PAEA Conference
Over the weekend of October 8, 2016 I had the honor of attending a bit of the Pennsylvania Arts Education Association (PAEA) Conference that took place at Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia. I was there at the invitation of Lynne Horoschak, who had been asked to give the “Legacy in Arts Education” talk at the conference. Lynne was a public school art teacher for 36 years in the School District of Philadelphia, and went on to start Moore’s Master of Arts in Art Education with an emphasis on special populations, the only such Master’s program in the country. She is also a fine painter. In her talk, Lynne was her usual mix of compassion, pragmatism, and humor. She said, “Never make a promise to a child that you can’t keep.” She gave tips on how to have children feel like it was a treat to help Ms. Horoschak get her “art on a cart” up four flights of stairs. Lynne was also a George Bartol Arts in Education Fellow. We even wrote a book about her that you can read here: lessons_from_an_art_teacher
I started to look at the program for the rest of the conference and saw a Keynote by Lily Yeh, founder of The Village of Arts and Humanities and now spreading her work around the world with Barefoot Artists. I remember when I was the director of Prints in Progress, an after-school program in Philadelphia, standing with Lily in a vacant lot. The lot was next to a building with walls that tilted alarmingly, while she tried to convince me that we should start a workshop in the building. I admit that I did not have the faith and vision that Lily had on that chilly morning. But Bartol was an early supporter of The Village.
Later in the day, Wendy Osterweil received the PAEA Outstanding Higher Education Award. Wendy is an Associate Professor of Art Education at the Tyler School of Art of Temple University. She is also an accomplished artist, teaching artist, and mentor who can facilitate a workshop on lesson planning or on supporting LGBTQ students in the classroom. Wendy is the immediate past Chair of the Bartol Board.
That afternoon, there was another Keynote by Eiko Fan, who has taught for almost 30 years at the Philadelphia Museum of Art for students who cannot see. Eiko says, “Art is Food.” Eiko was the 1995 George Bartol Arts in Education Fellow and we made a movie about her.
So this is not about us. But I was struck by how blessed we have been at the Foundation to be surrounded by these women. They are included on our Board, as Bartol Fellows, and as teaching artists in our community. We will be featuring our current Bartol Board members on this blog from time to time so they can share their wisdom about arts education and community arts. We will keep building this legacy.
Beth Feldman Brandt
Stockton Rush Bartol Foundation