Exploration of Artistic Experience and Multiliteracies in an Artist Workshop

By Mi-Hyun Chung.

Published by The Arts Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper will describe a way of using art to promote multiliteracies in education by sharing and discussing the pictures painted by a group of teacher-participants in a Jacob Lawrence Workshop, an artist workshop. The workshop is designed to raise social consciousness about literacy practices using the works of respected African American artist Jacob Lawrence. The pictures painted by the participants depict what literacy means to them and how literacy practices shape their lives and society. The pictures were analyzed based on social semiotic theories (Halliday, 1974, 1978, 1985), and Kress and Van Leeuwen’s grammar of reading images (1996). The analyzed results are presented according to primary participants (who and what), process (action or events), and setting (where) of the paintings, with sample paintings, interview excerpts, and frequency data. The results suggest that the participants were willing to expand their views on literacy. The paper concludes with discussion on how a systematic approach makes it possible for ordinary people who are not art critics to read pictures, at least in their narrative structures.

Keywords: Artistic Experience, Multiliteracies, Artist Workshop, Literacy Practice, Semiotic Visual Analysis

International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp.103-118. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.676MB).

Dr. Mi-Hyun Chung

Assistant Professor, Department of Literacy and Multilingual Studies , School of Education, Mercy College, Dobbs Ferry, NY, USA

My research interests include but not limited to new literacies, critical literacy, and multicultural education. I also have a great passion in promoting multicultural children’s literature and integrating technology, especially communication technology, into literacy instruction.


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