Monthly Mentor

Shelly Breaux (December)
Each month, a different member and NAEA awardee is the guest writer for the NAEA Monthly Mentor Blog. Shelly Breaux established the Art Program at David Thibodaux STEM Magnet Academy in Lafayette, LA. In her classroom, Breaux focuses on inquiry-based learning, problem solving, collaboration, conceptual thinking, and constructive criticism. She believes in using art as an educational tool, and that art provides her students with a voice and an outlet. Click "GO" to read her full bio.



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Friday 12.14.18

Peace Dove

By Shelly Breaux

Ever go through Starbucks drive through and pay for the car behind you? I am not one to frequent the coffee shop but each time I go I try to make it a habit to treat the next car.  I especially do this around the holidays. In fact, I go more often during the holidays just for this reason.

How do you teach your students to give back through art? How do you teach them to give of their time and talent? How do you lead them to be givers? I want to share with you one of the projects I have done with my students in the past that focused on just this!

Peace Doves

This project started with me wanting to show students how you can get others attention through art and how you can send positive messages through art. I did this project several years ago between the Thanksgiving and Christmas break.


It is not uncommon for my students to be seen on campus laying on the floor, standing on tables or stealing rocks out of the front flower bed. (I may need to explain this in another blog, TBC)

When my students are in the halls around campus others don’t pay much attention to what they are doing. This makes it easy for us to camouflage the doves into our surroundings.

Students are to pick areas that they want to hide the doves.  They must use what they know with color theory to be able to match the colors they need. They must make choices in which mediums would work best for the space they are working in.


We purposely make some doves more visible to get others attention.


Then the magic happens. My students start hearing others talking about the doves. Once people start to notice them (kids and adults) they start asking questions. Who made these? Why are they here? What does it mean? Look! I found another one! WAIT! Come see this one!


I encourage my students to just listen and not reveal that we put them there. During class, we share stories of what we are hearing in the halls. This can lead to class discussions on:

  1. How can art make an impact on others?
  2. How can art send a positive message to others?
  3. Now that we got their attention, what do we do?
  4. Do we leave them up or do something with them?
  5. What can these doves mean?

That year we decided to take them down and place them on large windows in the main hall of our campus with the world PEACE. Students decided the doves can represent diversity, peace, and love. That is when we titled them PEACE DOVES.


This was done 3 years ago, and do you know I still see doves left behind on campus. I have 3 still in my room. Every so often, a student will notice the doves in my room and inquire about it. They will even share other places they have seen them on campus.


This is not a project I do every year as I feel that it will lose its impact. Maybe it is time to revisit this project. With social media having such a huge impact on my students, it maybe a way to focus on something positive when we get back from our Christmas break.


Tuesday 12.11.18

We Are Life Long Learners

By Shelly Breaux

Today was a day of celebration. The day started with brunch celebrating Ben getting his first teaching job and ending with a shower for Trinity who is about to welcome her baby boy into this world. What does this have to do with Art Education?

In the state of Louisiana, students entering Education must complete an internship. Our local University reaches out to teachers asking us to mentor these students as they finish up their last semester of college. These students are about to become our colleagues. These students are taking our classrooms when we retire. These students share the same passion as we do.

Picture1Trinity did her student teaching with me in 2014.

Picture2Ben did his student teaching with me in 2017.

I became a mentor teacher my first-year teaching. You read that right! MY FIRST YEAR! When asked by “My Mentor” I immediately thought she had lost her mind. It’s my first year, I don’t know what I am doing, but I did it. I learned so much from that experience that I have had a student teacher every year since.

I have heard several reasons why others don’t want to have a student teacher.

Here are some reasons why you DO want to take in a Preservice Art Education Major.

Extra Eyes, Ears and Hands

My students benefit from me having extra help in the classroom. With two of us, we get to spend more one on one time with students. We can divide and conquer. I can focus on a task and not have to worry of taking my eyes off “little Johnny.

Reflecting on Your Own Practice

If I am going to be sharing my space, that means I am going to be sharing my thought process. Student teachers are the best “students”. They are eager to learn. As I am sharing my procedures, I am sharing my “why”. As I am sharing my lessons, I am sharing my “why”. Although we are highly reflecting professionals to begin with, this process really forces me to really think about my “why”.

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

I treat my student teachers as my equal. I build them up to be ready to take on my classes solo by starting with us teaching together. Team teaching is a great way to get them in the front lines. Team teaching is a great way for my students to learn to go to them. Team teaching helps make sure they are getting a hands-on experience of what it is really like to be a teacher.

Giving Back

As I stated in a previous blog, we constantly have to defend our role in education. Opening our door to the “next” art teacher is another way of advocating for art education. If we are not being a part of preparing the “next” then we are not being a part of helping build the Art Education Community.

I often tell my students teachers, in this experience you will either learn things you want to take with you or things you will never do.  Either way, you are learning.

Till Next Time….Give Back!

- SB

Monday 12. 3.18

Why is ART important?

By Shelly Breaux

Why is ART important? The infamous question. The question we hear, and we politely smile while on the inside we are rolling our eyes. We hear it when parents are not pleased with their students’ progress. “Why does he/she have to take art? He/she can’t draw.” We hear it in faculty meetings “Just take them out of art.” We hear it from our coworkers. “Just get the art students to do it.” We have all been in the position of defending our role in education. How do you answer the question? How do you defend your position? How do you show the importance of art in our schools?

Hands on, time management, confidence, visual learning, decision making, invention are just a few words that come to mind. Let's talk invention. We know that art dates to prehistoric times. We can bore the “non-artsy” with the brilliance of Michelangelo. Most people know Leonardo for painting the Last Supper, we can surprise them with him as a scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, painter, sculptor, architect, botanist, musician and writer. Many have seen MC Escher’s “Hand with Reflecting Sphere” but can they talk about his mathematical genius? You see where I am going with this? As art educators we not only know the history behind art and artist, we understand the relationships not only to academics but in our day to day life.

I teach using art as an educational tool. I focus on inquiry-based learning, problem solving, collaboration, conceptual thinking and constructive criticism. I believe the future is looking for self -reliant learners. When we teach focusing on art as an educational tool, we are helping are students explore different ways of learning, take ownership of their work and gain confidence.

It is important for us think of “our answer” when questioned on arts importance. It is up to us to educate those who don’t see it the way we do.


This is a piece that my Art 1 students recently finished. You will see our Math teachers bring their students in front of our work to talk about proportions. Our AP English  students had to write a response to this piece. Our Engineering students use this piece to exam the use of a grid.

When someone compliments my students work. I tell those stories first. I share the connections of art to our daily lives. I speak of the process my students go through to create. It's those teachable moments that help me not have to face the big question.

Till next time….Connect!

- SB

Saturday 12. 1.18

My Space

By Shelly Breaux 

I am a jump now, think later type of person, often finding myself thinking “what did I just get myself into?” I was asked to Blog for the NAEA Monthly Mentor after I received the honor of Southeastern Secondary Art Educator. I immediately responded YES! So here I am asking myself “What did I get myself into?”  I don’t know the first thing about blogging. I don’t really read blogs. I don’t know if there is blogging etiquette. I guess I need to figure it out. So here I am embracing this new experience.  Isn’t that what we do to our students every day? Throw something new at them, have them dive in and problem solve. 

I figured I would start the month by sharing my space in which I work in every day. From that moment you walk into your classroom for the very first time, you only then can start your big plan. Your space dictates your procedures and your instruction.


I am very fortunate to have the size and space I have in my classroom. I don’t clean for guests, so I didn’t clean-up for the picture.

How we utilize our space says a lot about us as educators. Everything in my room has a purpose. Everything we do comes from a plan. If that plan doesn’t work then we reflect and make changes accordingly. Now if you are anything like me, at times my best ideas come spare of the moment and I just roll with it.

Picture2I want my students to take pride in their space. Placement of materials can make or break traffic flow and transitions.


Storage space!!! We can never have enough.


I created a space for critiques or just for students to take a step back to look at their work in progress.


Being able to work with my students is valuable in demos. I don’t know what I would do without my Elmo!


My hallway has cork walls where I can staple the students work directly to the wall to display for the year.


A huge perk I have is having this patio area right outside my classroom for students to work outside on pretty days if they choose.


It’s a mess, but it is my organized mess. Having a space where I can keep my library of books and lock up items you don’t want students to have access to is nice.

Till next time….Imagine!



Monday 11.26.18

6 Simple Ways to get Started Doing Arts-Based Research

By Patricia Leavy, PhD

If you’re interested in exploring arts-based research (ABR) in your own practice, perhaps inspired by this month’s blog posts or perhaps long interested in merging your creative and scholarly work, the question is: How do I begin? Here are my top suggestions:

Read about ABR. (My book Method Meets Art provides an introduction and overview, but there are other books available)

Consume art in your medium. So, if you’re interested in ethnodrama (playwriting), read many plays, including some on the subject area your research explores, and, if you’re able, go to theatre. Or if you’re interested in collage-making, look at examples in books, and, if you’re able, visit museums, art galleries, or stores.

Consume arts-based research in your medium. So, if you’re interested in writing fiction, read examples of research transformed into fiction (short stories, novellas, and novels). Search online journals and the Social Fictions book series for examples. If you’re not sure how to find examples in your genre, read journal articles and books about ABR. Note the scholars mentioned in the text as well as the reference list.

Take note of what you enjoy. If you’re interested in creating a short film based on your research, and you’ve just watched several short films, here are questions to consider: What stylistic choices did you respond to? What did you like about the writing? What did you notice about the cinematography? Ultimately you will want to develop your own unique style, but learning what you’re drawn to will help.

Read about the craft of art-making in your genre. So, if you’re interested in writing poetry, read books about poetry. If you’re interested in a visual art medium, look at online tutorials.

Start experimenting. Take your research (e.g., interviews, ethnographic observations, literature review) and start dabbling with art-making. Start small. So if you’re interested in writing a novel based on your interview research, begin with an in-depth character profile, perhaps based on a composite of your interviewees. Or, create a writing prompt by taking a key sentence from your data and use it as an opening sentence for free writing. Or if you’re interested in representing your research through visual art, start with sketching out some ideas. This is just about learning, finding your voice, and developing a feeling for integrating your scholarly and arts practices.

- PL

Author’s Note: For a comprehensive introduction to ABR please see my book Method Meets Art Second Edition and for a comprehensive review of the field please see the Handbook of Arts-Based Research. Visit Guilford Press for discount details.

Monday 11.19.18

Arts-Based Research as Pedagogy

By Patricia Leavy, PhD

It’s probably fair to assume that all educators aim for lasting learning. No teacher or professor wants their students to forget all that was covered as soon as the course ends. The arts can help. While the arts are important to learn for their own sake, that’s not the focus of this blog. Rather, as proponents of arts integration advocate, the arts can be useful in the teaching and learning of other subject matter.

In last week’s blog, “The Science of Art,” I reviewed some of the neuroscientific research on how we consume art. To recap, people become immersed in art, forming deep impressions. For example, the whole brain is transformed as people read novels. Given the positive pedagogical benefits of engaging with art, bringing art into the classroom to teach other subject matter, seems like, well, a no brainer. Using arts-based research (ABR) in the classroom may be particularly beneficial as ABR is art that is based on research, often created specifically to teach a particular subject. For example, in an education elective, instead of using a research article or monograph to cover a specific topic, one might use a novel, film, or play based on an education researcher’s scholarly research on the topic. If it’s good art, it will be engaging and provocative, but because it’s ABR, it will also be informative.

There are some topics that are particularly difficult to address in classrooms, and yet, we often think they’re among the most important. For example, for years I’ve been writing about interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches to research and problem-solving. Despite my extensive research on this subject, I’ve found it difficult to help students understand the importance of these practices, how they come to bear in real-world research contexts, and why any of it matters. These topics are often abstract and can be perceived as boring. Students can read a book or listen to a lecture, but do they really grapple with the issues at hand and will they care once the course is over? These questions motivated me to write my latest novel, Spark, which explores interdisciplinarity, transdisciplinarity, problem-solving, and critical thinking, all through a fictional adventure story set in Iceland. I’ve included further engagement so the novel can function as a class text.

Many of us know from our daily lives that a novel we enjoy can be instructive, educational, inspirational, and challenging. Moreover, characters can linger on our minds for years after we’ve turned the last page. This is true of art across media. Herein we find the promise of bringing ABR into classrooms.

- PL

Author’s Note: For a comprehensive introduction to ABR please see my book Method Meets Art Second Edition and for a comprehensive review of the field please see the Handbook of Arts-Based Research. Visit Guilford Press for discount details.

Tuesday 11.13.18

The Science of Art

By Patricia Leavy, PhD

Arts-based research (ABR) is powerful in part because the arts engage people more deeply than academic prose. While most people intuitively understand that the arts can reach and move us in unique ways, there is actually science behind this.

Beginning with fiction, there is a growing body of scholarship on the relationship between neuroscience and literature referred to as literary neuroscience. Natalie Phillips and her colleagues (2012) used Jane Austen’s fiction in a study about how reading affects the brain. They found that the whole brain appears to be transformed as people engage in close readings of fiction. Moreover, there are global activations across a number of different regions of the brain, including some unexpected areas, such as those that are involved in movement and touch. This research helps to explain how we become immersed in novels, actually feeling as though we are within the story and that the house could burn down and we wouldn't notice. For another example, Gregory Berns (2013) led a team of researchers in a study published in Brain Connectivity that suggests there is heightened connectivity in our brains for days after reading a novel. Research on music and visual art has similar implications.

Daniel J. Levitin (2007, 2008) has written extensively about the cognitive neuroscience of music. He suggests that music is distributed throughout the brain, in both hemispheres, and that in essence, music is hardwired into our brains.

There is also an emerging field called neuroaesthetics that considers how our brains make sense of visual art. Nobel laureate Eric Kandel (2012) explains that visual art activates many distinct and at times conflicting emotional signals in the brain which in turn causes deep memories.

While the preceding examples focus on consuming or experiencing the arts, it is important to note that recent research on the activity of art-making has yielded similar results.

So whether we are consuming art or involved in art-making ourselves, art impacts us in profound ways, engaging us on deep levels, making lasting impressions. There are serious implications for how we might teach, learn, conduct, and share research most effectively.

 - PL


Berns, G. S., Blaine, K, Prietula, M. J. and Pye, B. E. (2013). Short- and Long-Term Effects of a Novel on Connectivity in the Brain. In Brain Connectivity. 3(6): 590-600.

Kandel, E. (2012). The Age of Insight: The Quest to Understand the Unconscious in Art, Mind, and Brain, from Vienna 1900 to the Present. New York, Random House

Levitin, D. J. (2007). This is your brain on music: The science of a human obsession. New York: Plume.

Levitin, D. J. (2008). The world in six songs: How the musical brain created human nature. New York: Dutton.

Thompson, H., & Vedantam, S. (2012). A lively mind: Your brain on Jane Austen. NPR Health  Blog.  Available at


Author’s Note: This blog was adapted from my 2014 blog Our Brains on Art which appeared in The Huffington Post and The Creativity Post. For a comprehensive introduction to ABR please see my book Method Meets Art Second Edition and for a comprehensive review of the field please see the Handbook of Arts-Based Research. Visit Guilford Press for discount details.

Thursday 11. 1.18

Arts-Based Research 101

By Patricia Leavy, PhD

The scholar seeks, the artist finds

—Andre Gide

I’m a sociologist but I spend much of my professional life in the world of art educators and artists. I’m not alone either. Increasingly, scholars across the disciplines are turning the arts. I’ll share a little of my own journey.

Early in my career I became frustrated with the traditional ways of conducting research and the limitations of traditional forms to best share research findings. Academic articles rarely follow the attributes of engaging writing. Academic articles are jargon-filled, difficult to access (they circulate in peer-reviewed journals inaccessible to anyone outside of academia), and have a highly limited audience even within academia. The vast majority of articles published in the social sciences have an audience of 3-8 readers, including their author. It’s pretty bleak for those of us interested in sharing our work with those inside and outside of the academy. This is what led me to a different research paradigm: arts-based research (ABR). This month’s mentor blog will focus on ABR. For those unfamiliar, here’s a basic overview.

In short, ABR is an arts approach to research in which art-making is integral to the research process. ABR exists at the nexus of the arts/humanities and the social sciences/sciences. ABR involves researchers in any discipline adapting the tenets of the creative arts in order to address research questions. An arts practice may be used during project conceptualization, data collection, data analysis, and/or to represent research findings. These approaches to research are useful for producing new insights and learning; description, exploration, discovery, or problem solving; forging macro-micro connections; evocation and provocation; raising critical consciousness or awareness; cultivating empathy; unsettling stereotypes; applied research; asking new questions or getting at old questions in new ways; and, contributing to public scholarship.

- PL

Authors Note: For a comprehensive introduction to ABR please see my book Method Meets Art Second Edition and for a comprehensive review of the field please see the Handbook of Arts-Based Research. Visit Guilford Press for discount details.


Monday 10.29.18

Contemporary Artists on Racism, Sexism, & Ableism

From Dr. Karen Keifer-Boyd

Art is pedagogical when encounters with the art generate ideas, reflection, critique, questions, and dialogue. In this fifth and final weekly post for the October 2018 series, I focus on contemporary art and facilitation strategies to inspire critical and creative visual thinking on racism, sexism, and ableism.

My selection of art comes from a one-day pop-up exhibition titled Overlap: The Warp and Weft of Intersectionality to be held at the Palmer Museum of Art at Penn State on November 2, 2018. Martha Wilson and I curated a show of works on paper from the Palmer’s collection. We focused on works that explore female subjectivity intersected with race, class, sexuality, among other identities.

Martha Wilson (b. 1947) is a pioneering feminist artist and gallery director, who over the past four decades created innovative photographic and video works that explore her female subjectivity through role-playing, costume transformations, and “invasions” of other people’s personae. Artist Martha Wilson founded Franklin Furnace—a nonprofit in 1976—dedicated to the preservation and exhibition of performance, artists’ books, and other ephemeral art forms.

Kimberlé Crenshaw describes intersectionality as “a metaphor for understanding the ways that multiple forms of inequality or disadvantage” convergence such as how racial stereotypes compounded with gender stereotypes deepen injustice toward, for example. Black girls. Art is pedagogical when the study of the histories of intersectional discrimination brings understanding and teaches ways to intervene to erode systems of oppression. As Crenshaw states, “you can’t change outcomes without understanding how they come about.”

Yolanda López’s Woman's Work Is Never Done

I met Yolanda López in the 1980s in Oregon through her sister, Anna Lee Lively, who joined some of the activist work I was doing at the time. Yolanda López participated in activism in California through her art, and is one of the best-known artists of the Chicano art movement. López's experiences informed her art, which ranges from posters to portraiture and the Virgin of Guadalupe series, an investigation of the Virgin of Guadalupe as an influential female icon, to her more recent installations and videos such as Images of Mexicans in the Media. Her media series, Cactus Hearts/Barbed Wire Dreams, is comprised of numerous installations, including Things I Never Told My Son About Being a Mexican. This installation explores identity, assimilation, and cultural change. Identity is not a self-contained unit, rather identity is constructed from relationships between people, their histories, and contemporary contexts. López has consistently challenged predominant modes of Latina/o/x representation. She proposes new models of gender, racial, and cultural identity.

Her project, Woman's Work Is Never Done, includes a series of prints, as well as the installation The Nanny, which explores the invisibility of immigrant women as domestic workers. The installation was showcased in the 1994 San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art’s exhibition “Mirror, Mirror…Gender Roles and the Historical Significance of Beauty.” Martha Wilson and I selected the 20 x 20 inch silkscreen, Homenaje a Dolores Huerta, from Women’s Work Is Never Done series, 1995 for the November 2, 2018 pop-up exhibition. Dolores Huerta co-founded, with César Chávez, the Union of United Field Workers. Huerta raised her voice and built coalitions to achieve legal protections and a better standard of living for agricultural workers. In 1998, President Bill Clinton honored her with the Eleanor Roosevelt Prize for Human Rights and in 2012 President Barack Obama granted her the Presidential Medal of Freedom. I began writing this blog entry on the subway train on my way to the Brooklyn Museum on October 28, 2018, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that the curators at the Brooklyn Museum included Homenaje a Dolores Huerta in their exhibition, Half the Picture: A Feminist Look at the Collection.

As López wrote in 2008 (Women’s Work is Never Done, Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts, San Francisco):

“Growing up in San Diego, ten minutes from the Mexican/U.S. international border amid a family with a cast of characters suitable for any Gregory Nava script, my family spoke English and Mexico City Spanish in equal measure. Victoria Fuentes Castillo, my grandma, tried to teach me civility. However it was her critical and wry conversation that interested me the most. My beautiful and meticulously groomed mother, Margaret, worked in the basement of the Grant Hotel and several French laundries as a presser. In 1978 she designed and created for me a contemporary Guadalupe gown, based on a Calvin Klein disco dress pattern. Indelibly I learned from her the sacredness of a union picket line.”

Yolanda López further stated:

“It is important for us to be visually literate; it is a survival skill. The media is what passes for culture in contemporary U.S. society, and it is extremely powerful. It is crucial that we systematically explore the cultural mis-definition of Mexicans and Latin Americans that is presented in the media.”

Founded in 2007, The National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) represents more than two million women, many of whom are immigrants and women of color. NDWA states: “We are the women who care for this country. We are Black, we are women of color, we are immigrants. Behind closed doors we face harassment, abuse, and discrimination. We are uniting with women everywhere so that all workplaces are safe and dignified.”

The conditions of the workplace compounded with the disparity of wages must be understood from an intersectional perspective to change the discriminatory system. For example, in 2018 in the United States, Black women working full-time earn 63 cents for each dollar paid for work by a White man. White women earn 79 cents for every dollar made by a White man. “Latinas and Native American women, experience a gap that is even larger, making 54 cents and 57 cents per dollar, respectively.” “According to the US Census Bureau, 54 million Americans have a disability, and people with severe disabilities working full time earn approximately $1,000 less per month than non-disabled workers. Meanwhile, 13.3 million people with disabilities between the ages 16 and 64 have experienced difficulty finding employment in the first place because of their disability” (Houlis, April 16, 2018).

What are five distinctly different ways to interpret a women’s work is never done?

Find images of women working. What are they doing? What are the social conditions that may have led to such work? Is the work valued and by whom? What impact does the work have on the social fabric that connects people? How is sexism, racism, and/or ableism challenged or manifested in the images of women working?


Monday 10.22.18

Intersectionality: Art Education Challenging Sexism, Racism, Ableism

From Dr. Karen Keifer-Boyd

Deborah Smith-Shank and I founded the journal Visual Culture & Gender (VCG) in 2005. It is the first multimedia online journal in the field of art education. VCG, has an established international review board of feminist scholars and is accessible in numerous databases and at Yen-Ju Lin joined as Associate Editor in 2017. VCG reached its 10-year anniversary in 2015, is well into its second decade, and thrives as a freely accessed journal that uses visual images as the focus of interrogations into issues of gender. VCG exposes culturally learned meanings and power relations that surround the creation, consumption, valuation, and dissemination of images of gender in relation to race, age, sexuality, (dis)ability, and social class. Our purpose continues to be promotion of international dialogues about visual culture and gender and to encourage the use of multimedia for analysis and presentation of such inquiry. Feminist research emphasizes social justice and starts from the premise that gender and sexuality intersect with other identity aspects historically conditioned by social and political power. Gender is both lived and symbolic of relationships of power. Gender body politics concern exclusion and marginalization.


Associate editor, Yen-Ju Lin and I are pleased to announce the September 2018 publication of Visual Culture & Gender, volume 13. The articles are timely and significant readings for students, educators, activists, artists, and scholars. Visual Culture & Gender, volume 13, contributes to challenging patriarchal visual culture narratives. In volume 13 of Visual Culture & Gender, Chiara L. Bernardi writes about building a database, called the “Feminicidios Reclassification Project,” from the digital dust gathered online about murdered or missing women and girls in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. Satyasikjha Chakraborty’s essay concerns her critical research at the intersections of racism and sexism in postcards, and how their circulation supported and maintained an oppressive social system. In “Queer Vibrant Matters: Remarks on Nick Cave’s Community Engagements,” James H. Sanders III discusses his involvement in performance artist Nick Caves’ 2017 community work, Until, and vision for the pedagogical implications of including Cave’s work in critical race and queer studies art curricula. Camilla Mørk Røstvik argues in her article, “Crimson Waves: Narratives about Menstruation, Water, and Cleanliness,” that menstrual product companies rely in their recent advertisements on feminist artists’ and activists’ approaches. Kevin Jenkins’s commentary, “Jumping the Gun: Uncritical Trans Ally Artivism Post-HB2,” provides advice on trans allyship. Michelle Bae-Dimitriadis and Olga Ivaskevich’s article, “Barbie Play and the Public Pedagogy of Abjection,” presents their case study of girls’ play with the iconic Barbie doll, in which the authors use Julia Kristeva’s theory of abjection as an epistemological framework to interpret the play as disruption to hegemonic gender regimes.



The non-profit arts organization Through the Flower invites artists, scholars, and educators to apply for the annual award named in honor of Judy Chicago, one of the Feminist Art Movement’s key founders and a pioneer in feminist art education.

JC-AWARD “I have devoted my life to trying to end the ongoing erasure of
women's achievements through my art; I have left
a path in my archives which is why they
provide a way to BUILD on our history
rather than repeat it.
”  Judy Chicago

“I appreciate the validation to my work . . .
After learning about women artists, it gave me hope.”
Melissa Leaym-Fernandez, 2018 award winner 

The Judy Chicago Art Education Award was established by Through the Flower to support artists, scholars, and educators who through their research, teaching, and leadership have contributed to ending the erasure of women’s history. A $1,000 award is presented annually to projects which utilize any of the three Judy Chicago archives as a resource for research and/or teaching:


For more information on the various archives, award winning teaching projects, and research with the collections, as well as how to apply, visit