It’s not often that the two sides of my working life come together, but this week I am delighted to share an amazing collision of education and art. Early this week “Higher Education for Good: Teaching and Learning Futures” was published. An open access, free download version of this incredible edited collection is available here .
Thank you to the editors Laura and Catherine for asking me to contribute to this project. Here is my text to accompany my piece ” Little Me”.
“This work is based on a work which I created as part of a collaborative project for the NPA Lab 2021 Collaborative Online Exhibition. Our project was titled “Copped Out” and used the COP26 Climate Change Conference as its central theme.
Living in Glasgow, I was intensely aware of the impacts of the conference — both at local and global levels. One of the most profound experiences for me was a night time march with Little Amal, the 2m puppet who has walked from Syria to Europe. Watching and following Little Amal as part of a torch lit parade was an intensely emotional experience. Hearing small children ask questions about the why and how of her reminded me of the importance of education and sharing lived experiences of the impact of our actions.
The puppet has an almost hyper real presence, embodying struggle, fear, resistance, hope but most importantly, humanity.
Education is the key to all our futures, signifiers such as Little Amal bring the plight and stories of real people to those who are currently protected from the ravages of human cruelty and climate change. Her presence creates new empathy, understanding and new narratives, providing hope. I hope that this image provides some synergies with the narratives of hope being shared in this book.”