Developing a Not-Knowing Pedagogy in the Public Art Museum

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Abstract

This article will discuss the importance of creating spaces for not-knowing within the public art museum and, in particular, within the context of the exhibition. Drawing on recent research into inter-paradigmatic encounters and co-creation of knowledge, the article presents a current study being undertaken between Edge Hill University and Tate Liverpool exploring a model for schools-in-residence. This model proposes the gallery environment and exhibition context as a site for more democratic teaching and learning, empowering teachers and children and creating a lens through which the institution can learn about its collection in new ways. By developing and embracing spaces for not-knowing, the institution, it is argued, can catalyse new co-created knowledge about artwork. Engaging with this context through a residency, provides an opportunity for teachers and pupils to learn together, exploring ideas, perspectives, and links across the curriculum in personalised and creative ways. However, experiences captured through our study demonstrate that there are barriers to developing such a pedagogy for both the school and gallery and that these challenges correlate with those identified within international research. The residency model offers opportunities to explore and seek ways to overcome these challenges through the creation of a new collaborative pedagogy.