2009 Publications

List of publications related to a/r/tography from the year 2015: Journal articles, book chapters, dissertations, and theses 

Please note that these works mention or use a/r/tography and not all of them focus on a/r/tography explicitly. 

LU: JUN 25, 2023

Barney, D. T. (2009). A study of dress through artistic inquiry : Provoking understandings of artist, researcher, and teacher identities [Doctoral dissertation, University of British Columbia]. https://open.library.ubc.ca/collections/ubctheses/24/items/1.0055260


What understandings are provoked by concepts of dress when related to artist, researcher, and teacher identities? An artist/researcher/teacher recruited a public secondary school art teacher and her students to join this participatory study. Participants were invited to investigate concepts of dress while inquiring through artistic processes. The written rendering of this dissertation is a mashup inquiry—a nondeterministic bricolage or ludic play—of images, text, and diverse theories, which gives rise to understandings of artist, researcher, and teacher identities. A key understanding from this study is the redescription of artist, researcher, teacher, and student identities. For example, redescribing a teacher as one who occasions learning rather than solely transmits fixed bodies of knowledge generates new understandings. Teaching and learning co-exist as neither fully separate roles within the identities of teacher and student nor as perfectly balanced and equal; they are processes that are relational, shifting, and shared. Likewise, as inquiry and research are redescribed alongside artist, teacher, and student identities, spaces of the possible or as-yet-unimagined emerge. The qualitative arts-based research methodology a/r/tography, which is utilized as the primary methodology in this study, is also conceptualized here, as a pedagogical strategy where the teacher becomes teacher-researcher and students become student-researchers. This places inquiry at the center of the curriculum. Participants in this approach to education work as independent and capable a/r/tographers moving toward an emancipatory form of artistic creation and inquiry. This study investigates how a secondary art course centered in inquiry can open perception to new possibilities as opposed to viewing a teaching/learning relationship as simply shaping perception to existing frames. Anti-oppressive forms of pedagogy may surface when the classroom is decentralized and the inquiry is nonlinear and outcomes are not pre-determined. A graphic version of this dissertation was also created and can be found at http://m1.cust.educ.ubc.ca/Artography/phd.php. The juxtaposition of the standardized format alongside this graphic version highlights how knowledge and communication are managed and maintained. Form and structure, like dress and the format of this dissertation, are explored within this study as both potentially liberating and potentially oppressive.

Burnett, M. C. (2009). Aesthetic/activism: The liminal area between aesthetic formalism and socio-political activism in art education [MA thesis, The University of British Columbia]. https://doi.org/10.14288/1.0055073


This thesis inquires into how an elementary art education curriculum can embody the space in/between aesthetic formalism and socio/political activism. I call this curricular approach aesthetic/activism. Visual texts will be the catalyst for research subjects to engage with aesthetic/activism through art-making, writing and dialogue. I am also interested in the learning and meaning-making that happens as a result of an aesthetic/activist curriculum. This research is situated in an after-school elementary art program in a multicultural, urban area. Much research has been written about engaging secondary students with socially activist curriculum (see Alter-Muri, 2004; Brown, 2007; Chalmers, 2005; Darts, 2004; Desai , 2006; Gude, 2007; Lanier, 1969; McFee, 1974). There is little research concerned with how younger students would respond to such curriculum. Two questions guided this research inquiry. The first question is: How can a curriculum be enacted that uses visual texts to inquire into the liminal area between aesthetic formalism and socio/political activism? The second question is: What learning results from such a curriculum? The research methodology of a/r/tography was used to inquire into these questions, which requires art, research and teaching to be integral parts of academic inquiry. The process of inquiring into the two research questions stated above led to new learning and knowledge that was co-created by the researcher and the research subjects.

Clark, K. (2009). Between antagonism and surrender. Creative approaches to research, 2(1), 22–37. https://web.s.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=0&sid=367cede4-3a04-4b80-86a8-67e5ab1d29ab%40redis


For many years, I have turned to the visual arts to help me explore the partially ineffable and intercorporeal dimensions of my own and research participants’ gendered and classed subjectivities. I have come to recognise this meaning-making impulse as A/r/tography (Irwin & de Cosson, 2004; Springgay, Irwin & Kind, 2005, 2008); a relational aesthetic approach to inquiring into and re-signifying my own and research participants’ experiences with both replicating and resisting patriarchal and classist cultural structures. My use of a/r/tographic method is extended through the incorporation of Maggie MacLure’s (2006) provocations for coupling a ‘baroque method’ of art with qualitative inquiry. Through illustration and reflection, this article seeks to interrupt the comfort and clarity of enduring humanist conceptualizations of interpretive inquiry, inaugurating a ‘productively irritating’ (MacLure, 2006) arts-informed method that allows the author/artist to dwell more resolutely in irresolute encounters with shifting social-class and gendered grounds of experience in United States schooling and higher education.

Detlefsen, J. D. (2009). A conversation about art education: What are the qualities in process that foster a qualitative whole in art education? [Doctoral dissertation, The University of Nebraska]. https://www.proquest.com/dissertations-theses/conversation-about-art-education-what-are/docview/304942764/se-2?accountid=14656


This study embraces the lived inquiry of artists/researchers/teachers termed a/r/tography. In doing so, it recaps the journey of five art educators, their first memory of art related experiences, paths to art education, and teaching. Topics of collaborative conversations were examined in relationship to theoretical ideas of Eisner and Dewey and the broad educational goals for twenty-first century high school students. Teachers in this study have had extensive experience as leaders in multiple arts curriculum movements across time and programs. They thought about art content to examine their own experiences. Ideas that surfaced were tested against their own practice, evidence provided by high school students, their students’ artwork, and historical art references. Analysis of documented conversations resulted in the emergence of the following key themes: (1) Our experience influences and lives on in our beliefs, understandings, and decision making for our classrooms; (2) Conversations can provide a stimulus for reflection when they are focused, guided by emerging questions, and invite diverse perspectives and experiences; (3) Assertions about the kind of thinking the arts employ invite ambiguity in understanding and seem disconnected to art education practice; and (4) A curriculum that addresses abstract concepts and thinking skills that invite student engagement in inquiry, learning, and being awake to possibilities is needed in art classrooms.

Dresser, K. E. (2009). Dancing with the dead generations after the Holocaust: A fictional blogged phenomenology and pedagogy of embodied post-Holocaust inherited memories via A/r/tography [Doctoral dissertation, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro]. https://www.proquest.com/docview/304965681/previewPDF/48ADE3083029455CPQ/1?accountid=14656


This project is a self-reflexive philosophical thought experiment on Holocaust memory, imagery and pedagogy. I ask if the artist-researcher-teacher-I who is neither a survivor nor a daughter of a survivor, can present an image of the Holocaust that carries memories forward via inherited or vicarious memories gained through multiple means of gathering and storing memory information. I engage open-ended arts-based inquiry through writing and art, published Second Generation narratives, and post-Holocaust artists’ theological, philosophical and artistic considerations of memory as I promote an art of memory and transformational pedagogy. I question which memory theories, theologies, and philosophies must inform an artist-researcher-teacher in order to intersect and interpret personal lived experience with that of eye-witnesses or other inheritors of Holocaust memories. My inquiry is located within larger issues of Holocaust studies: memory, art, narrative and curriculum research. I theorize Post-Holocaust imagination through self-reflexive arts-based research situated in a fluid, contingent fictional blog of a Second Generation teacher/artist wrestling with her inherited memories. Concepts of A/r/tography, an embodied art, research and teaching practice, are engaged as tools to inquire into sites and disciplines of post-Holocaust art making that interconnect to beget layers of additional or new understandings or unfold those hidden due to cultural, political or religious constructs or metanarratives. My inquiry does not end with a “final solution,” but asks additional questions related to keeping alive Holocaust memory through arts and pedagogical theories and praxes that acknowledge present reality (dystopic) rather than hope for future perfection (utopic).

Inglis, B. (2009). Leading on the verge of peril : A creative journey of vice-principalship [MA thesis, The University of British Columbia]. https://doi.org/10.14288/1.0067246


This work comprises both artistic expression and self-inquiry to tell the story of a Vice-Principal’s apprenticeship and his travels in the narrative landscape of public school. Using creative non-fiction methods, the lived experiences of a Vice-Principal are told through a collection of vignettes, adventures and mishaps that occur to the characters in and across the community arena of a typical Vancouver school called Kitsilano Elementary. Much of what is presented describes the struggle for meaning and professional development which the main character must experience to learn leadership. Angus Bruce, the apprenticing Vice-Principal undergoes training for leadership, taking guidance from a mentor, and attempts to avoid the perils and pitfalls that dot his landscape and challenge his authority and identity. In this narrative Angus shares his experiences, creative expression and practices of school administration, his personal angst and educational joy in caring for young people and the transformations that are experienced in gaining a professional knowledge required to be promoted to a Principalship. The narrative is written using creative non-fiction to portray a work of truthful representations in a fictionalized work of art. This arts-informed inquiry uses narrative structures, poetry, and a/r/tography to situate the self-study of administrative service and servant leader in a fictionalized work of art, while creatively portraying the researcher’s inner voices of unease, humility and gratitude.

Prendergast, M., Gouzouasis, P., Leggo, C., & Irwin, R. L. (2009). A haiku suite: The importance of music making in the lives of secondary school students. Http://Dx.Doi.Org/10.1080/14613800903144262, 11(3), 303–317. https://doi.org/10.1080/14613800903144262


This study offers an arts-based a/r/tographic inquiry using poetic transcription and representation of interviews conducted with a co-educational group of 14 students in a West Vancouver, British Columbia secondary school rhythm and blues band class. The decision to translate and analyse the interview transcripts into the Japanese poetry form of haiku is rooted in research literature in education and other fields, primarily health and nursing studies. Those studies demonstrate the efficacy of the highly condensed haiku to transmit meaning in a synthesised and creative form. While music education has a body of scholarship on students’ attitudes towards music and their music education, this kind of research has generally been presented in more traditional ways. Our contention here is that arts-based topics are complemented and illuminated when investigated through arts-based methods. As well, arts-based methods such as a/r/tography, offer multiple and complex perspectives of what the data ‘means’, thereby offering a welcome harmony of topic and method. This paper captures the depth and intensity of emotions, engagement and transformative affects that adolescents experience through music making – music matters to young people.

Uline-Olmstead, M. L. (2009). The knitted flower project: Arts-based research within knitting communities. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/apexprod/rws_olink/r/1501/10?clear=10&p10_accession_num=osu1245270376


The purpose of this thesis is to explore three threads of intertwining interest: knitting, artmaking, and qualitative inquiry. I explore the history of knitting as women’s work, a creative outlet, and community activity and from this historical basis I investigate the contemporary role of knitting in women’s culture. My contemporary analysis serves as the groundwork for creating a community knitted artwork. I approach this artmaking through mixed arts and feminist based qualitative methodology of A/r/tography and the corresponding methods of Autoethnography and Knitalong. To evaluate this work, I encouraged knitters to read, reflect, and revise the research findings and artmaking processes. I identify areas of resonance, transparency, communicability, and coherence throughout, highlighting ways in which this research can apply to other projects. My goal is to perpetuate knitting, engage in and encourage communal artmaking, and provide a forum for discussion about the role of knitting in the participants lives.

Winters, K. L., Belliveau, G., & Sherritt-Fleming, L. (2009). Shifting identities, literacy, and a/r/t/ography: Exploring an educational theatre company. Language and Literacy, 11(1). https://www.proquest.com/docview/1428562114/fulltextPDF/5E13DA85CC8B41A6PQ/1?accountid=14656


This article explores an emerging educational theatre company in Vancouver, British Columbia by investigating how the creators embrace their multiple roles as artists, researchers, and teachers in their effort to promote literacy in schools. The authors begin by exploring notions of identity within an a/r/tographic framework. They then define their understanding and usage of a/r/tography—a practitioner-based methodology that emphasizes living inquiry and reflective practice. They conclude with a dramatized dialogue about the process of researching, creating, and producing two touring theatre shows about literacy for young children. Using a/r/tography as a methodology allowed the authors of this paper to observe and pay close attention to the research data while still honoring the creative process of making theatre.

Yeung, C. L. (2009). Multimodal close reading as currency : Transmediating poetic language through artistic design [MA thesis, The  University of British Columbia]. https://doi.org/10.14288/1.0067608


This Master’s thesis explores the use of artistic design in a senior high school English class to teach the stylistic analysis of poetry. As a reflective, critical inquiry into my own classroom practice, this paper follows primarily the methodology of teacher research. A less prominent but equally important methodology is the autobiographical living inquiry of a/r/tography. My research features a poetry project for an English 12 class in a fine arts mini-school. Students conducted a close reading of a poem and then communicated their interpretation and analysis by creating an original artistic work in a non-textual mode. The students also articulated their own process of design. By exploring parallels between the poem and their artistic work, they developed a descriptive metalanguage to analyze the rhetorical connections between different modes of communication. This paper draws on the research areas of multiliteracies pedagogy and aesthetic education to investigate the implications of transmediating poetic texts. The study of the classroom project is framed within my overarching inquiry into the value of teaching literary close reading in an age when literacy educators face increasing obligations to prepare students for the world of the globalized knowledge economy. I use the notion of currency, both as monetary worth and as fluidity, to argue that the stylistic analysis of literature—which is usually not perceived as utilitarian—can indeed be useful outside the English language arts classroom. A project in which students explore literary close reading through multimodal design can help them develop critical and creative skills that do have value and can therefore be considered currency in the students’ social and economic futures.