As a high school art teacher, and part of the NYC Department of Education for over twenty years, I have personally experienced the dismantling of public education and a degrading national attitude towards teachers. It seems that questionable politics, money, big business and privatization are the new core curriculum for how a school should function, ultimately setting the stage for continued inequality and endemic discrimination.
During the Trump administration’s chaotic first few weeks I was getting materials together for a new class painting assignment. While following the DeVos nomination I created a series of works that show the backs of student paintings. I call this new series
“Left (behind) student work.” The work suggests turning our backs on children, public education and the ominous neglect of our future.
“Left (behind) student work" are paintings left behind by students. During the process of removing them from the stretcher bars, I became attached to the backs of the paintings, both visually and sentimentally. The memories of instruction, and the physical quality of the canvas, became reflective aspects of sharing the painting experience. This motivated me to sew them together making groupings whose form and arrangement inspired their titles, which are different teaching strategies for learning.
2017 "Left Behind (student work)"
This piece is a grouping of nine student paintings viewed from the back and sewn together. Collaborative learning is when students group together to solve problems and come up with ideas.
Born 1965, Coney Island, Brooklyn, NY
Single student work with first name
“Scaffolding” is a tall piece that rises from the floor onto the wall. Scaffolding refers to a variety of instructional techniques used to move students progressively toward stronger understanding and ultimately greater independence in the learning process.
“Think Pair Share”
“Think Pair Share” is comprised of two left behind student works sewn together. Think, pair, share is a learning strategy in which two students work together to solve a problem or answer a question.