Joseph Beuys and the Artistic Education

Theory and Practice of an Artistic Art Education


Joseph Beuys significantly influenced the development of art in recent decades through his expanded definition of art. In his art and reflections on art, he raised far-reaching questions on the nature of art and its central importance for modern education. His famous claim, “Every human is an artist,“ points to the fundamental ability of every human to be creative in the art of life – with respect to the development of one’s own personality and one’s actions within society. Beuys saw society as an artwork in a permanent process of transformation, a ‘social sculpture‘ in which every person participated, and for which everyone should be educated as comprehensively as possible.

Beuys describes pedagogy as central to his art. This book thus examines important aspects of Beuys’s art and theory and the challenges they raise for contemporary artistic education. It outlines the foundational theoretical qualities of artistic education and discusses the practice of ‘artistic projects’ in a series of empirical examples. The author, Carl-Peter Buschkühle, documents projects he has undertaken with various high school classes. In additional chapters, Mario Urlaß discusses the great value of artistic projects in primary school, and Christian Wagner reflects on his collaboration with the performance artist Wolfgang Sautermeister and school students in a socially-disadvantaged urban area.

Artistic education has become one of the most influential art-pedagogical concepts in German-speaking countries. This book presents its foundations and educational practices in English for the first time.

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Carl-Peter Buschkühle, Ph.D. (1996), University of Wuppertal, is professor for art education at the Justus-Liebig-University in Giessen (Germany). His research focus is on theory and practice of an artistic art education and on philosophy of art. His intermedia-artworks are shown in international exhibitions.
List of Figures

1 Joseph Beuys and the Artistic Education
 1 Freedom and the Challenge to Be an Artist of Living
 2 The Polar Play of Artistic Thinking
 3 The Decentralized Subject of Postmodernity
 4 Identity and the Coherent Self

2 Beuysf Extended Concept of Art
 1 Art as Evolution of Mind
 2 Emancipation of the Mythical Age . Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Christ
 3 Progress of Science – Kant, Newton, Helmholtz, Marx
 4 Calvary Cross – Materialism
 5 Christ and Man at Play
 6 Humans as Artists and the Social Sculpture
 7 Exercising Artistic Communication
 8 Future Perspectives: Artistic or Artifijicial Thinking

3 Beuyse Artworks as Lessons
 1 The eWarmth Qualityf of Artistic Thought
 2 eThe Chieff . Revolution of Communication through Art
 3 Creating New Flows of Energy
 4 Political Statement and Shamanistic Revolution
 5 The eChieff as Artistic Education

4 Artistic Learning through Artistic Projects
 1 The River Metaphor
 2 Pedagogy in Artistic Projects
 3 Structural elements of the Artistic Project
 4 Experiment
 5 Contextuality
 6 Polarities as Tensions and Tools of the Artistic Learning Process

5 Artistic Projects as Practice of Artistic Education
 1 Research Aspects
 2 "Head with a Story"h
 3 Aspects of Artistic Education

6 Variations of Artistic Projects
 1 "Freedom and Dignity"
 2 "The Leaf Principle – Bionic"
 3 Diffferent Topics – Diffferent Ways of Artistic Learning

7 Studying Artistic Education
 1 Becoming a Generalist
 2 Art Educators Have to Be Artists
 3 Providing Time and Space for Artistic Studies
 4 Should I Study One Medium or More?
 5 Giving Grades for Artistic Studies?
 6 Visual Studies – Pictorial Sciences
 7 The Contemporary Relevance of Art History
 8 The Role of Philosophy
 9 Relevant Philosophical Disciplines
 10 Pedagogy – The Art of Artistic Education
 11 Educational Studies
 12 Art Pedagogy as Art
 13 Interdisciplinary Studies in Artistic Projects
 14 Experiencing and Reflecting Polarities
 15 Critical Reflection and Imagination in Pedagogy
 16 Existential Creativity – Artistic Education as a Mental Attitude

8 Art Class as a Construction Site
Mario Urlass
 1 How Can We Bring Students into Educational Situations Which Foreground the Self and the World?

9 On the Educational Potential of Art: A Requiem for Schonau
Christian Wagner
 1 Introduction
 2 Pupils, Art, and Economic Utility
 3 Pupils as Performers: Dying and Death from Diffferent Perspectives
 4 Artistic Thinking as a Teaching Process
 5 Schonauer Requiem: A Requiem for Schonau
 6 Concluding Remarks

All interested in theory and practice of art education, in philosophy of art, theory of aesthetic education, practice of aesthetic and artistic education inside and outside schools.
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