Special Issues of Studies in Art Education on Histories and Historical Research in Visual Arts Education

Press Release

Two special issues in 2017: 58(1) and 58(2)
on Histories and Historical Research in Visual Arts Education

An interpreted past enables us to make sense of the present, helps mold identity, and enriches understandings of the field.
Studies Senior Editor Mary Ann Stankiewicz

Coming 30 years on the heels of the last historically themed issue of Studies in Art Education, and in step with the celebration of the 70th anniversary of NAEA, these special issues ask why historical research is significant to art education.

Authors in both volumes mark maturity in historical research by moving beyond simple descriptions of events to bring theoretical frameworks to bear in their interpretations and re-interpretations. In Volume 58(1), authors advocate for art education informed by the field of Childhood Studies; study education, administration, and class struggle at the Museum of Modern Art beginning in the 40s; examine and identify professional networks in the first decade of Studies in Art Education; and argue that history “is not told like a string of rosary beads, but grasped as a whole, like a constellation.”

Volume 58(2) continues the narrative begun in 58(1), with conversations that include an African American artist hired to teach drawing in segregated schools in Washington, DC; another African American artist who gained her reputation as a trouble-maker by criticizing White patrons of Black art; and the almost forgotten artist wife of a national spokesperson for art education. In the Commentary, a well-known psychologist looks back on what has changed since his first ideas about the developmental course of children’s drawings.

In this issue, Senior Editor Stankiewicz again notes that “Historical research raises questions that encourage us to reflect on present and future, as well as the past. When brought into crucial, complicated conversations, historical narratives—like contemporary artworks—can help readers empathize with the pain of others, consider varied points of view across diverse communities, and decide to become agents of change who challenge social inequities through their work in art education.”

For more information about Studies in Art Education, please see:

Digital abstracts and full articles at:

Editorial: Revealing and Creating Shapes of the Field, by Mary Ann Stankiewicz

Education, Administration, and Class Struggle at the Museum of Modern Art, 1937-1969, by Jean A. Graves

Augusta Savage: Augusta Savage: Sacrifice, Social Responsibility, and Early African American Art Education, by Sharif Bey

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