Educating Through Visual Arts, Engaging Through Distance

Jul 22, 2020 2:00-3:30pm EDT

Watch the Webinar

Watch the Webinar (Spanish Dubbed)

This past semester saw a swift transition to remote arts instruction for many teachers. Amidst feelings of isolation and anxiety about the future, teachers and students had to adjust to a new way of learning and teaching. As humans so often do in times of crisis, our communities rose to the challenge. Teachers and students worked together to learn new technology; resources for remote teaching were shared throughout the art community; and genuine efforts were made to maintain a sense of community despite the imposed social distance. As we look towards the fall, and continued remote instruction for many schools, arts instructors still need a space to hear others’ experiences, share, and gather resources on navigating online arts instruction. With this new webinar series, a2ru hopes to provide that space.

Our first panel will focus specifically on the Visual Arts. Webinar attendees will leave with concrete strategies for distance learning in the context of painting and drawing courses; tips for teaching museum studies when museums are inaccessible; online tools for meeting typical studio and performance course objectives; methods for building trust and facilitating teamwork collaboration; and more. Specifically focusing on engagement, panelists will also discuss how instructors can increase engagement amongst their students, sustain engaged learning discussions remotely and while using methods of visual analysis, and work online as a socially engaged community artist. Finally, we will close with a discussion of how art instructors can adapt their message to an online format. Instead of trying to maneuver our existing curricula into an online space, how can we leverage the unique opportunities afforded by the digital world?


 Susan Lakin is a Professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences.  She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California and an MFA in Art Studio with an emphasis in digital arts at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Lakin has worked commercially in Los Angeles, Sweden and Australia.  In addition to her commercial work, she owned and operated a professional retail photographic supply store in Burbank, CA. Lakin’s artwork has received many awards and is part of the permanent collection at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Oakland Museum of California, the Griffin Museum of Photography, and the Photography Museum of Lishui, China. More recently, Lakin is engaged with immersive technology and collaborates on community projects in the nonprofit sector.  She is co-chair of the RIT Frameless Labs, which promotes technical innovation and artistry in the fields of virtual and augmented reality by hosting annual symposia and an online space for the XR community to collaborate.


David Andree is an interdisciplinary artist whose work explores landscape as a subject of flux through painting, drawing, sculpture, video and sound. David holds a Master of Fine Arts from the State University of New York (SUNY), received his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD). Upcoming exhibitions include The Other Four at the Weisman Art Museum in Minneapolis, MN, Water: A Minnesota Biennial at the Minnesota Museum of American Art in St. Paul, MN, and the Wassaic Summer Exhibition in Wassaic, NY. He has had work exhibited at Gallery MC and BWAC Gallery in New York City, Rochester Contemporary Art Center, Hallwalls, the Big Orbit Gallery, Exhibit-A and the Burchfield Nature and Art Center in upstate New York, The Masur Museum of Art, Plains Art Museum, in addition to numerous venues around Minneapolis, Minnesota including SooVac and the Rochester Art Center. He has recently been Artist in Residence at Works on Water, New York, NY, the Wassaic Project, Wassaic, NY, Grand Marais Art Colony, Grand Marais, MN, the Anderson Center in Red Wing, MN amongst others. He is the recipient of a 2014 Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, a Creative Climate Award from the Human Impacts Institute, a Juror Award from Ylinka Barotto, Assistant Curator at the Guggenheim Museum, and his work is collected by Target Corporation, including private collections throughout Minneapolis, Chicago, New York, and the United Kingdom.

David currently holds the position of Assistant Professor at the University of Arkansas School of Art in Fayetteville where he resides in the Ozarks. Some of his courses include: Observation + Visualization, Form + Surface, Drawing Propositions, Perception into Abstraction, Painting + Digital Tools, Abstract Painting, Landscape Painting, Figure Painting, Contemporary Representational Painting, Professional Practice, and Graduate Seminar. Prior to joining the University of Arkansas in the Fall of 2015, David taught Painting and Drawing at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (2011-2015) and the State University of New york (2008-2009).

A visual artist, Rébecca Bourgault, came to the field of Art Education after years of artistic practice and of studio art teaching at the post-secondary level. An assistant professor and chair of the Art Education department at Boston University, she holds an Ed.D from Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, an MFA from the University of Calgary, and a BFA in Studio Arts from Concordia University, Montreal. She has taught studio arts in Western Canada and art education at CUNY Brooklyn College, Teachers College, in New York, and Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Massachusetts. Her art education research is published and presented internationally. Her current research interests include socially-engaged art practices, art activism, intergenerational community-arts, and contemporary arts-based research. She lives and works in Massachusetts.


 J.R. Campbell has been researching, designing, and creating artwork with digital textile/imaging technologies for more than 25 years. His work pushes the limits of imaging technologies as they relate to clothing, our environment, and the human form. Campbell’s art/design work has been shown in more than 80 national and international exhibitions, receiving 20 awards, including the International Artist of the Year Award for the South Korean Fashion & Culture Association in 2010. Campbell has consulted for a number of academic institutions as they have integrated the technology into their teaching/research labs, and has published on subjects of design methods/issues, controlling color, and integrating the technology into the design process for textiles and apparel.

Campbell completed a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design in 1994, followed by a Master of Fine Arts in textile arts and costume design in 1996, both from the University of California, Davis. He then taught textiles, computer-aided fashion design, and color theory in San Francisco before being appointed assistant professor in the Department of Textiles and Clothing at Iowa State University in 1998. He was tenured and promoted to Associate Professor there in 2004. In July 2005, he moved to Scotland to become “Research Fellow” at the Centre for Advanced Textiles at the Glasgow School of Art, where he directed research for the Centre, located in the School of Design. In November 2006, while still in Glasgow, Campbell was granted a Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert.) in Supervising Postgraduate Research Degrees for Professionals in Art, Design and Communication from the Centre for Learning and Teaching in Art and Design at University of the Arts London.

Campbell came to Kent State University to start his position as professor and director of The Fashion School in July 2009. He stepped away from this role in July 2018 to take on the role of executive director for the Design Innovation Initiative. As Executive Director, Campbell is helping to cultivate the Design Innovation Initiative at Kent State University to support design thinking, project-based learning, technology-infused maker communities, and the curation of cross-disciplinary collaborative teams to tackle “wicked” problems.


 David Choberka is UMMA’s Andrew W. Mellon Curator for University Learning and Programs. He is responsible for identifying, managing, and enhancing campus collaborations that result in significant exhibitions and other scholarly projects, as well as general teaching and learning from UMMA’s collections and exhibitions. He has led UMMA’s academic engagement since 2012 and overseen in that time a five-fold growth of the museum’s work with university classes, from around 70 a year to around 400. Choberka holds a Ph.D. from the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, University of Michigan, as well as a Museum Studies graduate certificate. His areas of interest encompass global cultural, social, and political history and theory.


Angela Johnson is an award-winning artist, and has shown her work both locally and nationally. She has worked in formal and informal learning environments, and is involved in community arts.

In 2000, she earned her BA in elementary education with a minor in art from Coe College in Cedar Rapids, IA. After teaching elementary art for several years in Houston, TX, she moved back to Madison and attended UW-Madison where she completed her MA in Art Education in 2008. Her Master’s thesis project focused on creating and designing a space plan for the open art studio at the new Madison Children’s Museum, which opened in August 2010.

In 2013, Angela returned to UW-Madison to begin an MFA program with a focus in photography. While working on her MFA, she met Dr. Ahna Skop and became a lab collaborator and her MA exhibition “Translation” is on permanent view outside the Skop Lab. Her background in museum design helps to bridge complex science concepts through art in order to make the content more accessible to the general public. Johnson went on to complete her MFA, also from UW-Madison, in 2016. She is currently the director of the Wisconsin Regional Art Program and Visual Arts and a lecturer for the art department.


Catherine Rosamond is an artist and educator with an extensive background in museum education for all age groups and in teaching painting to adult artists with developmental disabilities. Currently the chair of Art Education at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, she was formerly the program advisor for pre-service and in-service art teachers at Queens College, the City University of New York where she taught undergraduate and graduate-level courses in art education for almost a decade. She has also taught art education courses at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, and at City College, City University of New York. She taught studio art at Teachers College, Columbia University, where she obtained her master’s and doctoral degrees in Art & Art Education. Other degrees include a BA/BS in Communications and Art History from Boston University (COM/CAS BUCOP) and a BFA in Product Design (metals) from Parsons School of Design. In her studio practice, she is a mixed-media artist interested in exploring materiality and pushing the boundaries of various mediums. Current research interests include exploring the stance of inquiry of contemporary artists and how it might inform art education pedagogy.