CAPE’s new Office Residency Program!

 In The CAPE Artist/Researcher Journal, The CAPE Blog

CAPE has launched its new Office Residency Program, which invites teachers and teaching artists from our network of Artist/Researchers to further investigate the potential of art and pedagogy. As arts education is marked by expanding the field of how art is taught and how arts practice impacts the classroom learning environment, the new Office Residency Program provides teachers and teaching artists a studio space, carved out from our office in the Loop, to create new art works inspired by the arts integration from their classrooms.

Drawing from an arts integrated unit developed at Pasteur Elementary School (located down the street from Chicago’s Midway Airport), the first two residency projects are investigations of the matrix of heritage and divergent cultural codes, and the role of collaboration and research in art making. Pasteur Elementary’s art teacher Arturo Barrera and teaching artists Julie Potratz and Jose Luis Benavides conceived a project wherein students studied Mayan and Navajo poetry, chants and spells, and the history of capes in popular cultural, in order to produce wearable art with symbols that embodied and celebrated their identity.

Office Residency Program pasteur classroom 1

In response to this project, Arturo and Julie will bring their two distinct art making practices together via a collaborative residency. Arturo is creating paintings inspired by the flowers and plants originally cultivated on chinampas (the man-made floating gardens of pre-Hispanic Mexico City), while Julie is currently working on gestural performances for the camera that examine “jokes about the body”. While working alongside each other, they intend to find intersections between their practices that will transpire into a garment- much like their students’ work- that embodies an action or implied action around culturally responsive curricula.

Jose Luis, who works with voice, text, video, and photography, will use his residency to respond to the work he did with the Pasteur students. While researching different studies of indigenous languages, he was struck by the subsequent conflation and collisions of culture inherent in the recoding of archaic symbols. He will make new work that “create[s] an alphabet of experiences and identity markers of the modern Latinx experience through an exploration of personal narrative and archeological and academic publications.”

Arturo Barrera and Julie Potratz’ collaborative residency will take place from May until late June and Jose Luis’ residency will be from late June through the end of July. Stay tuned for updates, events, and exhibits from these projects!

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