Deconstructing Narratives About Artistic Mastery in Art Education



A recurring challenge for art educators is how to include Black voices within the art curriculum. This challenge seems ever more relevant as a pandemic underlined the inequalities and injustices within our culture and society. A critical question for many White visual arts educators is: How do I, as a White educator, bring important issues of race, privilege, ideology, gender, and anti-racism into the art classroom? How can I help students to understand Whiteness as a cultural text and set about destabilizing White identity? How does one make space for an antiracist pedagogy? One way to begin conversations about these issues is to bring the voices of Black artists into the classroom through viewing their artwork and listening to recorded accounts of their experiences. These artists have a transformational urgency in their work; they embody another artistic canon that includes ways of working that are on the cutting edge of contemporary art. The artwork and stories of Black artists are not just alternative voices, their work is shaping the future of art, culture, and society.

Keywords: Contemporary Art, Black Artists, Anti-racist Pedagogy, Artistic Canon

How to Cite: Graham, M. A. (2021) “Deconstructing Narratives About Artistic Mastery in Art Education”, Journal of Cultural Research in Art Education. 38(1). doi: