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Communing with Nature: The Collective Journey of Yatoo Artists and its Pedagogical Potentials
자연과의 교감: 야투작가들의 공동여정과 그 교육적 가능성
Kyoung-Mi Paek (백경미 UNIST 교수)
International Journal of Art & Design Education(영국/UK), v38 n1 p240-255 Feb 2019
Increasing concern over environmental sustainability and socioecological well‐being has motivated people to consider ways to reconnect humans with the natural world through lifestyle changes that integrate well with natural systems. Educators who share environmental concerns have explored diverse aspects of ecological art practices to envision an extended and socially relevant role of art. Accordingly, the present study aims to bring educators’ attention to a collective journey of artists who have immersed themselves in making an affective relationships with nature. Regarding the journey as an invaluable cultural resource that holds the potential to extend the horizon of how we may live with nature, it examines the collective journey of the artists in Yatoo, an artist association based in Gongju, a greenery city in the southwest region of South Korea. The guiding questions set for the contextual analysis are: ‘how do Yatoo artists become native to their place?’ and ‘what can be learned from their collective journey?’. First, the collective journey of the artists is examined based on four major factors: regionality, positioning, methodology and networking. This is followed by discussions focusing on the value of the collective identity shaped by bioregionally conscious art practices and the pedagogical potentials arising from the collective journey. This paper suggests that the collective journey of Yatoo's life‐sustaining practice, operating in an era of environmental crisis, contributes to the recently developing alternative pedagogical discussions by opening up dialogues that navigate ways to encourage more sustainable practices for the future.