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What Do Artists Know?

  • November 30, 2011
  • By a2ru      
Frances Whitehead, Professor of Sculpture at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), created the Embedded Artist Project with the City of Chicago and SAIC.


 

Frances Whitehead, Professor of Sculpture at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), created the Embedded Artist Project with the City of Chicago and SAIC.  Whitehead and other SAIC Studio Faculty were “embedded”  in city government units, to work side-by-side with city workers on civic problems.  With much experience in environmental remediation, Professor Whitehead was “placed” in the Chicago Department of Environment Brownfields Division.   One of the fascinating outcomes of this ongoing work is Whitehead’s “Knowledge Claim” articulating “What do artists know?”  Her one-page document focused on “qualitative literacy” (available here) is immensely useful for anyone interested in understanding how the knowledge of artists and other creative professionals might be meaningfully deployed to assist with the complex problems facing the world community.