Merging the Real and the Virtual: 21st century practices and the studio model

Dr Kylie Budge
2014 Conference

The value of studio as the primary context for learning and teaching in university art and design is assumed by many academics in these disciplines. However, the future of the studio model is now a significant issue because of pressure on universities to justify space and resources in a manner unlike in previous decades. In this paper I focus on exploring artist and designers’ 21st century virtual studio practices to generate thinking about how such practices might inform university studio learning and teaching. The high uptake of social media applications such as Instagram by artists and designers is changing the way creative practitioners communicate their studio practices. This is an exciting time and much can be drawn from this turn to the virtual to inform studio pedagogy in the university art and design context. I draw on ethnomethodological research traditions to show that virtual studio practices are altering the way artists and designers use and interpret studio in a manner that is positive, educative and inclusive. The paper argues that by attending to such changes in studio behaviour and practices, and thinking about their application in the educational context we can further support students in their experience of studio, and in the process of preparing them to engage with the art and design worlds. Such thinking suggests approaches that are forward looking, relevant and engaged while retaining elements currently valued in the studio model.

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About the author

At the time of writing Kylie Budge was Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Collaborative Learning and Teaching at Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia. She was recently appointed Research Manager at the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences in Sydney, NSW. She has worked in the university sector for many years in Melbourne holding senior lecturer and lecturer positions working with art and design disciplines. Kylie completed her PhD at the University of Melbourne where the focus of her research was creative practice and the teaching of art and design in higher education. Her research interests include art, design and creativity; digital cultures; creative process and practice; creativity; embodied and tacit knowing; and materiality. Kylie is a printmaker having studied traditional Japanese woodblock printing in Kyoto, Japan, where she lived for seven years.