Research, Theory & Practice / Annotated Bibliography

The following list is a small selection of useful essays and texts that were used to develop the units and lessons on this site. We hope these texts will enrich your teaching practice. This is a growing list so check back with us frequently and we welcome any suggestions for additional resources.

General Research, Theory, and Practice

Erickson, M. (2004). Interaction of Teachers and Curriculum. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 467-486). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

Erickson draws on theory and research published from art education books, journals, research reports and conference proceedings to analyze the interaction between art curriculum and teaching. Art educators, who are interested in scholarly writings about art curriculum and research, will find this section of the handbook invaluable as they move towards writing and implementing curriculum. The author also addresses how researchers can design studies that art teachers can understand and use within their practical teaching to ensure that they are making well-informed curriculum choices and decisions.

Freedman, K. & Stuhr, P. (2004). Curriculum Change for the 21 st Century: Visual Culture in Art Education. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 815-828). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

Based on the premise that contemporary arts education should prepare students for personal fulfillment and enable them to constructively contribute to society; Freedman and Stuhr contend that a 21 st century arts curriculum must focus on newly emergent issues, problems and possibilities that go beyond discipline based curriculums and standardized assessment. Using visual culture to connect makers to viewers, the authors believe that art classrooms should be conceptualized as multitasking arenas where images and objects lead students and teachers through the investigation of popular culture, contemporary ideas, issues, opinions, and conflicts.

Freeman, N. (2004). Aesthetic Judgment and Reasoning. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 359-377). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

This article addresses the assumptions people make when viewing works of art and the pattern of reasoning they undertake when judging a work of art. The author surveys pictorial judgments made by diverse audiences of varying age groups and contends that innovations in art put a strain on the everyday aesthetic reasoning of the general public. As a result, arts educators must understand the assumptions that people bring to the art viewing experience and be prepared to challenge their habitual way of seeking meaning in art.

Parsons, M. (2004). Art and Integrated Curriculum. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 775-794). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

Michael Parsons argues that high-quality integrated curriculum targets important social problems transcend the limits of individual disciplines and includes topics that are ambiguous and need to be understood from several points of view. Drawing from educational theorists like Dewey, Lowenfeld, and Gardner, the author analyzes curriculum from a social, psychological and epistemological perspective and provides concrete examples of specific integration projects. In doing so, he cites developments in the contemporary art world that lie behind these examples and enable art to become central to the integrated curriculum.

Rabkin, N. & Redmond, R. (2004). Putting the Arts in the Picture: Reframing Education in the 21 st Century. Chicago: Columbia College

This book explores the many roles that successful arts integration programs have played in improving education for students in schools and communities. Beginning with the 1980’s reformers in Chicago who argued that students were not developing higher order thinking skills such as; the ability to problem solve, think creatively, communicate clearly and work in teams, the authors construct a powerful argument for placing the arts at the center of education reform. Drawing on current reports and studies, the authors separate arts integration from conventional arts education and examine its pedagogical strategy, educational benefits, and the challenges of making it readily available in schools and after school programs. This book offers practical strategies for educators, policymakers, school reformers, and parents who want to use the emotional, social, and sensory dimensions of the arts to engage students and promote development and learning across the curriculum.

Smith, R. (2004). Aesthetic Education: Questions and Issues. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 163-185). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

Smith examines issues related to the philosophy and practice of aesthetic education as it relates to present day challenges and policymaking in arts education. The author provides multiple definitions and concepts of “aesthetic education” through the lens of three generative thinkers (Schiller, Read, and Dewey) and various contemporary theorists. Recent developments and contemporary movements toward aesthetic education are discussed as well as questions and issues for further consideration on the meaning and nature of aesthetic education.

Sullivan, G. (2004). Studio Art as Research Practice. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 795-814). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

The author challenges misconceptions about the intellectual status of learning in the visual arts through his exploration of the theoretical constructs of artistic practice. Arguing that the artist has the potential to change the way we see and think, Sullivan views the studio experience as a form of cognitive inquiry and a site where qualitative research can be undertaken. By questioning the role imagination and intellect plays in constructing knowledge, he validates art practice as a legitimate form of research that raises profound questions and yields grounded outcomes.

National Research Council (2000). How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School. Washington DC: National Academy Press.

This is an expanded edition of a resource that addresses what teachers and schools can do within their curriculum, classroom, and teaching methods to help students learn more effectively. The authors draw on new research and findings from many branches of science to explore how to better link the science of learning to actual classroom practices. This book examines these findings and their implications for what is taught, how it is taught, and how student learning is assessed. Included in this text are exemplary teaching examples and illustrations of how research on learning and transfer has uncovered important principles for structuring learning experiences that enable students to use what they have learned in new settings.

Wachowiak, F. and Clements, R. (2001). Emphasis Art: A Qualitative Art Program for Elementary and Middle Schools. New York: Longman.

Intended for school teachers interested in providing a qualitative art program at the Elementary and Middle School level, this text offers educational psychology and child development as well as lesson plans, practical classroom suggestions and full color illustrations throughout. The first section of this text focuses on the role of the arts in society and the schools, the fundamentals of design, teaching strategies, and the intrinsic worth of the art studio experience as motivation in the arts. The next section addresses children’s learning and creative development, ways to integrate the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains in order to teach higher level thinking skills, and how to motivate students to learn by integrating art with other content areas like science and math. The last section offers new teaching approaches to art appreciation, history, criticism and aesthetics as well as objectives and evaluation criteria for assessing learning in the arts.

Creative Thinking and Making: Collecting

Corrin, L. (1994). Mining the Museum: An Installation by Fred Wilson. New York: New Press

This book documents New York installation artist Fred Wilson’s "mining” of the Maryland Historical Society's collection to create a thought-provoking exhibition that elicits emotional responses from historic artifacts and documents. Through Wilson’s surprising juxtapositions recreated in this catalogue, he provides a more intimate personal connection to the past. Amongst these images are rearranged and labeled marble portrait busts, reward posters for runaway slaves, and cigar-store Indians with backs turned to the viewer. This highly challenging album argues for a more open, inclusive relationship between cultural institutions and the communities they serve, as well as heightens the awareness of the role museums play in presenting and interpreting cultural heritages.

Renfrew, C. (2003). Figuring it Out: The Parallel Visions of Artists and Archaeologists. London: Thames & Hudson Ltd.

In this book, Professor Colin Renfrew argues that archaeologists can learn a great deal about interpreting and understanding the past through the approaches taken by modern day artists. He investigates the ways in which contemporary artists and archaeologists seek to understand the world through their unique individual practices. By examining art as archaeology and archaeology as art, he offers the reader fresh opportunities to analyze and understand the human condition. Various examples of archaeological sites are juxtaposed with modern art and sculpture made by leading contemporary artists, including Richard Long, Mark Dion, Antony Gormley, Eduardo Paolozzi, and David Mach, whose works are noted for their engagements with their physical surroundings.

Schaffner, Ingrid and Matthias Winzen (eds.) (1998) Deep storage: Collecting, storing and archiving in art. Munich: Prestel.

This catalogue documents the artistic practice of collecting and saving as a means of artistic expression through a multitude of artworks: paintings, sculptures, books, photographs, computers, projections, ready-mades and installations. The catalogue serves as a reproduction and installation view of Martin Kippenberger's exhibition at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia. By using the work of 40 different internationally celebrated artists, the authors provide surprising insight into the process of creating art. In many respects, this catalogue is organized like a storage file of information, categorizing the artistic contributions and essays and texts by 25 different authors alphabetically.

Creative Thinking and Making: Collaborating

John-Steiner, Vera. (2000). Creative Collaboration. University Press: New York, NY

Vera John-Steiner explores cultural and historical perspectives on the creative process by examining well-known partners who have shared their work as well as their lives. From Marie and Pierre Curie to Georgia O'Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz, John-Steiner examines the collaborative exchange of ideas and thoughts. Many of these collaborators complement each other, meshing different backgrounds and forms into new styles. Sharing her personal experience with creative collaboration, John-Steiner shows that the human mind, rather than flourishing in solitude, thrives on human relationships.

Sawyer, R. Keith. (2007). Group Genius: The Creative Power of Collaboration. Basic Books: Cambridge, MA

Keith Sawyer, a psychologist at Washington University, challenges the "lone genius" myth and other popular ideas about creativity and collaboration. By exploring inventions such as the ATM, mountain biking, and open source operating systems, Sawyer reveals the hidden collaborations that drive extraordinary creativity. This book provides insight into how to harness individual creativity within a collaborative group, supporting Sawyer's claim that every individual can tap into their own reserves of creativity by learning the secrets of "group genius" and drawing on the inspiration from others.

Tapscott, D. and A.D. Williams. (2006) Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything. Penguin Books: New York, NY

This book examines the possibilities of mass collaboration, open-source software, and innovative business practices. The authors integrate examples from the arts ("mashups"), heavy industry (gold mining) and Wikipedia (the online encyclopedia written, compiled, and (re)edited by everyday people). They also explore what mass collaboration means for businesses, using Procter & Gamble, BMW, Lego, and other software companies to argue that new forces are reshaping the way we work and interact with one another.

Wandless, Paul-Andrew. (2006). Image Transfer on Clay: Screen, Relief, Decal & Monoprint Techniques. Lark Books: A Division of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. New York / London

Contemporary ceramists have adapted traditional printmaking procedures to transfer images onto clay surfaces. This is the first comprehensive how-to book, written by Paul Andrew Wandless, a contemporary ceramist who incorporates printmaking techniques into his clay work. This book is a thorough resource for studio artists, teachers, and students who can apply these techniques in their home, studio, or classroom. From silk screening to block printing, numerous photos demonstrate each process and showcase finished pieces. This book includes over 100 images of artworks by contemporary artists.

Creative Thinking and Making: Photographic Silkscreen Printing

Coming Soon!

History and Cultural Context

Sontag, S. (2002). Looking at War: Photography’s View of Devastation and Death. The New Yorker, December 9, 82-98.

Sontag thoughtfully and rigorously examines visual depictions of war throughout history with a concentration on photography. She analyzes the veracity of war imagery from gender and cultural perspectives and attempts to differentiate between factual and fictional imagery. Citing Civil and Vietnam War photography, the paintings of Goya, and the contemporary work of Jeff Wall among others, Sontag acknowledges the malleability of war imagery and its ability transform public opinion. Images of war simultaneously detail very specific events yet remain vague as indicators of broader cultural context. Ultimately, Sontag decides that despite the overwhelming power of the photographic image it does not reveal much of anything, or at least nothing approaching empathy, for the privileged spectator.

Schooler, J.W. & Eich, E. E. (2000). Memory for Emotional Events. In E. Tulving & F.I.M. Craik (Eds.),
Oxford Handbook of Memory (pp. 379-394). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

The authors of this article begin by questioning how emotion influences memory. Specifically, they divide memories into three categories: eyewitness, flashbulb, and traumatic experiences. All three are treated to the same inquiries. First, does emotion enhance or diminish the capacity to remember? Second, whether or not special mechanisms are necessary to account for emotion’s effect on memory? Through a mixture of psychological theory and scientific observation the authors state that emotion can affect memory, both positively and negatively. Unfortunately, the specific effects are considerably harder to determine. The final assessment posits that the neurological processes involved in memory recollection are too complex and varied to reduce to a simple conclusion.

Frisch, M. H. (1991). The Memory of History. In J. Rickard and P. Spearritt (Eds.), Packaging the Past: Public Histories, (pp. 5-17). Melbourne: Melbourne University Press.

This article addresses Michael H. Frisch’s perceived disconnect between history and memory in the United States. He sees two seemingly disparate streams of thought, encompassing both sides of the political spectrum, contributing to this problem: selective amnesia and artificial distancing. The former is exemplified by a student’s inability to recall basic facts about the Vietnam War, despite growing up while the war occurred. The latter is characterized by an interview with a former CIA officer who attempts to consign the atrocities of Vietnam to another era very different from today’s reality. Regardless, both approaches are inadequate at engaging with the process of remembering and recognizing history’s influence on current events. He cites works by oral historian Studs Terkel and documentary filmmaker Marcel Ophuls as successfully establishing a connection between past and present events, which offer interpretive accounts of peoples’ remembrances. Works like theirs, he claims, reject the commodification of public memory and begin to reveal what it truly means to remember.

Sandage, S. (1993). A Marble House Divided: The Lincoln Memorial, the Civil Rights Movement, and the Politics of Memory, 1939-1963. The Journal of American History, 80(1), 135-167.

Sandage posits that the Civil Rights movement strategically utilized the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC, and Lincoln’s ambiguous legacy as the Great Emancipator in the eyes of black leaders, to achieve widespread legitimacy in America. He focuses on two seminal events at the Memorial that bookend a significant chapter in blacks’ struggle for equality. First was a 1939 performance of “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” by black singer Marian Anderson in front of an integrated audience of 75,000 at the memorial. This performance was the first civil rights event favorably received by the white American establishment to “earn a positive place in the American public memory,” (136). Second, the 1963 March on Washington where Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his “I have a dream” speech serves as the apotheosis of the Lincoln Memorial’s role in American Civil Rights and begins King’s role as the primary figure in the Civil Rights movement. Sandage expertly illustrates how black Americans understood and adopted “the icon called Abraham Lincoln” and the Memorial’s central location in the nation’s capitol to positively align themselves with Lincoln’s increasingly legendary status in the public memory.

Thelen, D. (1989). Introduction: Memory and American History. In David Thelen (Ed.), Memoryand History, (intro.). Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

In his introduction to the book History and Memory editor David Thelen discusses how memory has become an essential tool in historical scholarship but its nature is not wholly understood. Thelen elaborates by introducing two “starting points” for the study of memory and history. One is that memories are constructed, not reproduced or merely recollected. The other is that the construction of memory does not occur in isolation but through interactions with others including family and community members. More scholarship is needed to investigate the nature of memory since not enough, in his opinion, has been written on what it means to remember. Within this context, he introduces the topics and authors of the collected essays in History and Memory, which seek to remedy part of this perceived problem. The book includes analyses of oral histories related to Watergate, the John Brown Harper’s Ferry incident, and Studebaker employees. Also included are essays on the structures of American collective memory and remembrances of the Civil War related to Frederick Douglass.

Wolfe, P. (2001). Brain Matters: Translating Research into Classroom Practice. Virginia: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development

This text is written primarily for educators to assist them in understanding brain functioning and to provide examples of how to match teaching practices to how the brain encodes, manipulates, and stores information. The author explores why meaning is essential for attention, how emotion can enhance or impede learning, and how various types of rehearsal are necessary for different types of learning. Included are ways to use the visual and auditory senses to enhance learning in all grades and subjects as well as classroom-proven examples of simulations, projects, and problems that make curriculum more meaningful.

Critical Thinking

Barrett, T. (1997). Talking about Student Art: Art Education in Practice Series. Massachusetts: Davis Publications, Inc.

The purpose of this book is to improve student’s critical thinking skills through models and suggestions that facilitate and improve student dialogues about art. This book offers s amples of critical discussions and presents both successful as well as unsuccessful critiquing strategies in a multitude of educational settings. Sample critiques likewise provide real classroom perspectives on dealing with meaning, gender issues, influences and more. Judging student art is also addressed, while general recommendations for interactive group critiques round out this guide for practicing teachers.

Barrett, T. (2000). Criticizing Art: Understanding the Contemporary. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Through a wide sampling of critical publications from present-day critics writing about contemporary American art, this supplementary text helps students to better understand contemporary art by engaging them in the study of aesthetics and criticism. The author organizes this book around core critical responses such as: describing, interpreting, judging, and theorizing, which provide both teachers and students with an effective framework for viewing and discussing contemporary art and writing their own critical responses.

Beattie, Donna Kay. (1997). Assessment in Art Education: Art Education in Practice Series. Massachusetts: Davis Publications, Inc.

This book transforms current worldwide research and theory on evaluation and assessment in the arts into concrete classroom strategies. The author provides a thorough explanation of key concepts and vocabulary relating to assessment as well as many examples of how assessment can be directly integrated with instruction. Performance assessment strategies are detailed and evaluated, and include ideas for improving the strength of the art portfolio as well as approaches that encourage meaningful student responses in art journals. Traditional methods and strategies like scoring and judging, and formative and summative assessment styles are also explored in this comprehensive examination that provides the information teachers need to make informed decisions about student assessment in the classroom.

Aesthetics

Danto, Arthur C (1992). Beyond the Brillo Box: The Visual arts in Post-historical Perspective. New York: Noonday Press/FSG.

In this collection of interconnected essays Arthur Danto expands upon his ideas about the "end of art", an era that dates roughly from the early sixties, which saw, Danto writes, the end of the master narrative of Western art. Danto considers Andy Warhol's Brillo box sculptures (1964) to be a perfect example of an artwork that conclusively established that art could be anything, take any form, and even be indistinguishable from everyday objects. This shift, according to Danto opened up the philosophical question of the nature of art. Now, Danto says, "...we are witnessing...a triple transformation - in the making of art, in the institutions of art, in the audience for art".

Danto, Arthur C. (1981). The Transfiguration of the Commonplace. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press.

The central theme of this book is: how do you define a work of art? Arthur Danto describes how developments in art in the early sixties rendered old ways of looking at and understanding art irrelevant. Using Andy Warhol's Brillo Boxes as a primary example. In making the Brillo boxes, Warhol created something that was undeniably art, yet at the same time visually indistinguishable from the real, ordinary object it depicted. This is the transfiguration of the commonplace, now the realm of art, which displaces the old notion of art as having particular properties distinct from ordinary things. Here, Danto proposes a new theory of art, one which is not just based on aesthetics but encompasses the relationship between philosophy and art and the connections between art, social institutions and art history.

Freeman, N. (2004). Aesthetic Judgment and Reasoning. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 359-377). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

This article addresses the assumptions people make when viewing works of art and the pattern of reasoning they undertake when judging a work of art. The author surveys pictorial judgments made by diverse audiences of varying age groups and contends that innovations in art put a strain on the everyday aesthetic reasoning of the general public. As a result, arts educators must understand the assumptions that people bring to the art viewing experience and be prepared to challenge their habitual way of seeking meaning in art.

O'Doherty, Brian and McEvilley, Thomas. (2000). Inside the White Cube: The Ideology of the Gallery Space. Berkeley, University of California Press.

The context in which art is viewed can be as important as the art itself. An object that might not be impressive if it were sitting on the street becomes, when hung on a gallery wall, Art. The issue of context in art was largely unexamined before these hugely influential essays were first published in sequential issues of Artforum in 1977. Brian O'Doherty examines the assumptions on which galleries and museums are based and discusses the relationship between economics, social context and aesthetics which is the basis of those assumptions.

Postrel, Virginia. (2004). The Substance of Style: How the Rise of Aesthetic Value is Remaking Commerce, Culture & Consciousness. New York, Harper Perennial.

This critically acclaimed book examines the nature of aesthetic value and its relation to our personal, economic and social lives. With examples from fashion, real estate, politics, design and economics, Virginia Postrel argues that appearances count, aesthetic value is real, and the aesthetic imperative is a vital component of a healthy, forward-looking society. The twenty-first century has become the age of aesthetics, and this influence has taken over the marketplace and much more.

Smith, R. (2004). Aesthetic Education: Questions and Issues. In E. Eisner & M. Day (Ed.), Handbook of Research and Policy in Art Education (pp. 163-185). New Jersey: Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

Smith examines issues related to the philosophy and practice of aesthetic education as it relates to present day challenges and policymaking in arts education. The author provides multiple definitions and concepts of "aesthetic education" through the lens of three generative thinkers (Schiller, Read, and Dewey) and various contemporary theorists. Recent developments and contemporary movements toward aesthetic education are discussed as well as questions and issues for further consideration on the meaning and nature of aesthetic education.

Stewart, Marilyn G. (1997). Thinking through Aesthetics. Worcester, Massachusetts, David Publications, Inc.

A practical guide for teachers looking for the organization and structure necessary for successful inquiry teaching, including classroom tested models and examples showing how the inquiry process can be used to help students think clearly about aesthetics. The book provides a solid theoretical foundation to aesthetics with a strong conceptual framework and shows how the teaching of aesthetics can be approached in elementary, middle and secondary schools. More than just another book about aesthetics, this is also a book about thinking.