Art education

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Painting children

Art education or art mediation as a collective term deals with different practices and theories at the interface between the arts and education , in which people in different areas of society are informed about the arts, exchange ideas or react with their own creative processes. The term art education mostly refers to situations in art lessons in schools, whereby the term art education mainly refers to mediation in museums , exhibitions and art spaces.


Art education or art mediation is not just about imparting artistic skills, but about a broader term. Theories and practices from contemporary art and education are adapted and renegotiated. Art education is itself an artistic practice. Art education is conceptual work that combines theoretical knowledge and practical experience.

It involves the audience, turns them into actors or opponents. In this sense, contemporary art education can cross borders just as much as contemporary art. The places of art education / art mediation are just as diverse as those of the visual arts and are often located at school or extracurricular institutions. Cooperation and work between artists and institutions are frequent forms of communication work. New forms of art education / art mediation are constantly being tried out and are subject to social change and its needs as well as currents in the visual arts.

Art education deals specifically with the fine arts, architecture , new media and design , as well as with the aesthetic and scientific reflection of artistic works and their history. Art education, like art education , is about cultural mediation and access to works of art and, in some areas, is aesthetic education. "The hope is that in the course of time it will become clear how complex and diverse the creation of an art-pedagogical map would be, how different the educational and art references, how multiple the locations and the theoretical reference systems are" (Gert Selle).

There are several currents in art education, especially: a) image orientation, b) artistic education and c) aesthetic research and biography orientation. The currents in contemporary art education are diverse, because it is always about a procedural self-image.

The didactic difference between art and education

Art is based on freedom, creativity and originality. A work of art has a market value that arises from the relationship between supply and demand. It is quite reasonable to argue about the artistic value of a work, but it cannot be measured objectively. What applies to works of so-called high art must also apply to the small works that are created in school lessons. The claim that art can be taught (Gunter Otto) has long since been put on record as untenable. If one proceeds from the thesis that only art-like things are created in school, but no art, then art is reduced to its teachable parts (Reinhard Pfennig, Klaus Kowalski). This is just avoiding the real problem. By counting formal characteristics, artistic objects can be compared quantitatively, but not measured qualitatively. Teachers, however, are under the administrative pressure to assess the performance of their students with grades. They are supposed to judge something that cannot be operationalized. Not only the fine arts, but also music, dance and (poetic) language, that is, all arts form the creative and liberal potential of the school as an institution. That means: School does not need the arts so that they can be propagated and communicated, but the school needs the arts so that they can educate at all.

Open art classes as opposed to formal art classes

In an open art class (Schütz 1998) the teacher does not set clearly defined tasks for which the results are predictable. The task should be an impulse for artistic action, for trying out and experimenting, for artistic research. An offer is made that can relate to a motif consisting of a selection of tools and materials. A task should at least have gaps into which the pupils' imagination can jump. Fortunately, there are also times when a student misunderstands a task and therefore misses it. In such a case, the most original solutions often emerge (Schütz 2003). In special cases, lessons can open up to such an extent that pupils and teachers swap roles: learning teachers - teaching children (Schütz 2010).

Gunter Otto vs. Gert Selle

In the 1970s, Gunter Otto developed a didactic concept for aesthetic education that affirms that art can be taught and demands it as a key qualification within the framework of general education. This includes, on the one hand, the process of practical image production and the interpretation of one's own works through one's own experience and understanding of images, and on the other hand, viewing and interpreting the works of others. Gert Selle contradicted this concept and was of the opinion that above all contemporary art could not be interpreted, which is what art education attaches great importance to; rather, individual experiences in the aesthetic process of approaching art can be made without being directed by a teacher.

Since this dispute between Otto and Selle in the 1980s, a lot has happened in the art education discourse. Representatives of the image orientation refer largely to Otto's understanding-oriented art didactics, within the biography orientation or artistic education it can be observed that an attempt is made here to integrate the two opposing positions of Otto and Selle with one another. In addition, there are diverse research approaches at universities on contemporary art education and art education that have long overtaken Gunter Otto and Gert Selle (e.g. Berlin University of the Arts or Zurich University of the Arts).

Subject and degree

The training to become an art mediator can be completed through a university degree in the form of a bachelor's and master's degree. Only the master’s degree enables you to teach the subject of visual design or art at high school.

See also

Literature on art education

  • Gunter Otto: Didactics of Aesthetic Education. Approaches - Materials - Processes . Braunschweig 1974, ISBN 3-14-160153-4 .
  • Reinhard Pfennig: The present of the fine arts. Education in visual thinking. Isensee, Oldenburg 1964, DNB 453759661 .
  • Klaus Kowalski: Practice of art education. Didactics and methodology . Stuttgart 1968, DNB 457281332 .
  • Klaus Eid, Michael Langer, Hakon Ruprecht: Basics of art teaching. An introduction to art didactic theory and practice. 6th edition. UTB for Science - Verlag Ferdinand Schöningh , 2002, ISBN 3-8252-1051-0 .
  • Georg Peez : Introduction to Art Education. 3. Edition. W. Kohlhammer, Stuttgart 2008.
  • Johannes Kirschenmann et al .: Art-pedagogical generation talk . Conference report. Munich 2004.
  • Johannes Kirschenmann, Frank Schulz , Hubert Sowa (Hrsg.): Art education in the project of general education . (= Context of art education. Volume 7). kopaed, Munich 2006.
  • Helmut G. Schütz: Didactic Aesthetics. On the theory of the aesthetic object and its didactic relevance . Munich / Basel 1995, ISBN 3-497-00748-X .
  • Helmut G. Schütz: Pragmatic art education. Justifications for aesthetic practice . Munich / Basel 1979, ISBN 3-497-00906-7 .
  • Kunibert Bering, Ulrich Heimann, Joachim Littke, Rolf Niehoff, Alarich Rooch: Art Didactics. 2., revised. and exp. Edition. Athena-Verlag, 2006, ISBN 3-89896-254-7 .
  • Gabriele Lieber: Art education as human education. Giessen 2004, DNB 984753923 . (Dissertation University of Gießen 2004, urn : nbn: de: hebis: 26-opus-18087 (full text online) and twelve video documents in avi format ).

Literature on art education

  • Office transformer. K: Transforming Knowledge . Art communication as knowledge production. In: Beatrice Jaschke, Nora Sternfeld et al. (Ed.): Schnittpunkt. Educational turn. Spaces of action for art and culture mediation. Vienna 2013.
  • Barbara Campaner: Art Education and Migration or: Don't just talk to yourself. In: Institute for Foreign Relations (ifa), Institute for Art Education (IAE) of the Zurich University of the Arts, Institute for Art in the Context of the University of the Arts Berlin (Ed. =: Art education in the migration society. Reflections of a workshop. Stuttgart 2012).
  • Claudia Hummel: It's a beautiful house. One should occupy it . Update of the museum. In: intersection. Beatrice Jaschke, Nora Sternfeld, in collaboration with the Institute for Art Education, Zurich University of the Arts (ed.): Educational Turn. Spaces of action for art and culture mediation. Vienna 2013.
  • Oliver Marchart: The institution speaks. Art mediation as a domination and emancipation technology. In: Jaschke, Beatrice, Charlotte Martinz-Turek and Nora Sternfeld (eds.): Who speaks? Authority and Authority in Exhibitions. Vienna 2005.
  • Carmen Mörsch: Working in Tense Relationships 1 : History of cultural mediation between emancipation and discipline. In: Zeit für Vermittlung, an online publication on cultural education. Published by the Institute for Art Education of the Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK), on behalf of Pro Helvetia, as a result of the accompanying research of the cultural mediation program (2009–2012), 2013.
  • Carmen Mörsch: Artistic mediation : The group Kunstcoop in the space between pragmatism and deconstruction. In: Viktor Kittlausz, Winfried Pauleit (ed.): Art-Museum-Contexts. Perspectives on art and culture mediation. Bielefeld 2006.
  • Carmen Mörsch: contradicting yourself. Art education as a critical practice within the educational turn in curating. In: schnittpunkt, Beatrice Jaschke, Nora Sternfeld, in collaboration with the Institute for Art Education, Zurich University of the Arts (ed.): Educational Turn. Spaces of action for art and culture mediation. Vienna 2013.
  • U. Seegers: What is art education? History - theory - practice. (kunst_markt_vermittlung). (2017)
  • Gila Kolb , Thorsten Meyer: Art education: a reader. kopaed, Munich 2015.
  • Belinda Kazeem-Kaminski: Engaged Pedagogy: Anti-discriminatory teaching and learning at bell hooks. Zaglossus, Vienna 2016
  • Nora Landkammer: Mediation as collaborative knowledge production and models of action research. (Ed.) Bernadette Settele, Carmen Mörsch, Elfi Anderegg, Jacqueline Baum, Beate Florenz, Art Education in Transformation, Scheidegger & Spiess, Zurich 2012, ISBN 978-3-85881-340-4 .
  • Editor Austria Center for Didactics of Art, Textile & Design, edited by Ruth Mateus-Berr, Michaela Götsch: Perspectives on Art Education. Walter de Gruyter, Berlin / Boston 2015, ISBN 978-3-11-044078-2 .

Web links

Individual evidence

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  2. ( Memento of the original from November 3, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  5. Cf. Georg Peez : Introduction to Art Education. W. Kohlhammer GmbH, Stuttgart 2005.
  7. See among others: Gunter Otto u. a .: Educational manual. Art and Education in the Industrial Age . 1970.
  8. Cf. among others: Gert Selle: Experiment Ästhetische Bildung . Reinbek 1990.