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Moments of Intensity: Affect and the Making and Teaching of Art

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Affect often arises unexpectedly within the process of making art (along with other creative activities). In this article I argue for affect as a necessary and constructive dynamic within educational processes specifically for art and design. After a consideration of its recent neglect within art education, I revisit the notion of affect with reference to a number of thinkers who provide different perspectives, but particularly through the lens of the US psychologist Silvan Tomkins. Through him and others I seek to understand how affect can be recognised and cultivated in pedagogic situations. I do so by reflecting on the making and teaching experiences of students following an MA in Art and Design in Education and a practice‐based PhD, as witnessed by me (supervisor/co‐tutor), as recounted by students and as discussed in post‐event conversation/semi‐structured interviews.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Senior lecturer in Art, Design & Museology at the Institute of Education, University of London and is Programme Leader for the MA Art & Design in Education.

Publication date: October 1, 2011


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