Rewilding the Arts through Pedagogy.

  • Tim Stephens: AL PG Cert, ADS


I am a dyslexic artist, teacher educator and dyslexia tutor at UAL. This short talk will take us on a journey to the Australian outback, via Peru, the American wilderness and a Korean Zen temple in a meandering tour. This narrative requires us not to, simply, imagine… it will articulate four modes, or projects, of enquiry. They each involve a confrontation with unknowing, a cutting edge. One, when we do not know how to reach those failing in the system. Two, when we want to involve a community in re-charging a relationship with the environment they have lived in for generations, that is slowly degenerating. Three, when we want to find deeper meaning in our own creative work. Four, when we do not know what we do not know, and yet, feel that necessity to engender curiosity in the face of our own limits. What then? This is where the journey begins, naturally. This talk will provide food for thought on these themes based on four unrelated research projects about: “the nature of education”. Artists, with or without Dyslexia, often have the ability to see connections between otherwise unrelated things. Not only do these four moments explore cuts or breaks in a situation, they enquire into ‘connection’ and into places where funding cuts often continually seek to rationalize productivity, and disincentivize wild exploration. How do we understand; ourselves, when solely inhabiting the ‘hyper-humanised’ environments in which higher education invariably takes place? Places; where edges should become central to our concern.