Central to my teaching philosophy is the believe that an aesthetic experience is a complete experience in itself, tied to the human nature and empowered by education. In this direction, my teaching philosophy is aligned with the epistemological approach of the aesthetic curriculum. The aesthetic experience is an indeterminate space of time in our existence that shakes one present time and guides one to a future knowledge. Much of the mental activity is pleasant or unpleasant, fused to the shape and qualities of the work of art in which one concentrates one senses. It is a time in which one tries to understand what one sees, feels and think about a work of art, searching for a meaning while developing dispositions to continue the search. When one teaches, one has to focus on the whole experience since the learning experience has to take into consideration all senses. Students learn based on how one speaks, moves, dresses, the smells around the room, the images presented, etc. I tend to think of teaching with the educator as an artist and the student as a work of art.
The creation experience and interaction with the content will elicit aesthetic emotions and a dialectic relationship between the two of them. Meaning that we have the potential of personal growth in regard to our environment, but with a fundamental need for others to aid our productive relationship with it; in other words, learning is also social.
Students from Art Education and Animation sharing ideas of how to create art for people that suffer squisophrenia using Hellblade Game as an example.
Art Education students workshop with high school students. The workshop explore the concept of the no-place and the body interactions with places that everybody use but belongs to no one.
With my students and Dr. Maxine Greene one of the most prominent philosphers of the american education and the aesthetic curriculum at the Lincoln Center Institute for Arts in Education, NY (2012)
Discussing sociological aspects of education through a timeline.
On a recording session of educational philosophy video in the lab.
After Hucarán María we selected contemporary works of art that analysed puertorrican new realities and identities.
Studying our history having aesthetic experiences that engage students with their own culture.
I recognize that students come to the classroom with a wide range of life experiences and priorities, looking to express themselves. Therefore, it is imperative to find methods for students to connect their content in class with their lives outside the classroom. An aesthetic education has a significant role in my teaching process because by studying a work of art that is relevant to the time, context and to the students, one can generate deeper discussions, develop critical thinking and practice aesthetic reflection, expand and share points of view and generate actions to follow. An aesthetic education is about:
the ways in which one feels, think and sees the traditions of knowledge and encounters with the works of art.
the interpretation of the multiple situations in which one experiences beauty and how to create change in the world.
As an educator, I make space for students to better understand that the creation of art is influenced by social conditions and by consequence why art matters, take responsibility for its meaning and its impact as a social action. I believe, that students learn best when more than a grade is at stake, when the product of their effort has a life beyond the classroom through exhibitions, taking action on issues and community-based projects that have social impact.
My preferred strategy is the studio-seminar in which in a given unit students can read, assess, discuss content and relate it with the contemporary culture. Depending on the type of course, I can assign pieces of difficult text to dissect apart in class, to help not only with the discussion, but also to generate in their mind images that can facilitate the creative thinking process. Work in groups in my classes is essential as it helps students in sharing ideas, tasks, responsibilities while developing time management, design and presentation skills. The evaluation comes through the the different stages of the process; in which individual and collective work is assessed. From this evaluation, the student develops a self-awareness that is a key thinking skill to create personal growth and visual language.
Developing inquiry skills through experience.
With Dr. Gerald Cupchik while presenting his book: The Aesthetic Emotions. Canada (2018)
With Dr. Verónica Puig (Argentina) talking about neurodegenerative deseases. (2017)
My research areas of interest are neuroaesthetic and visual arts from the postmodern point of view. Neuroaesthteic is a recent science that study how the brain builds the concept of beauty through the aesthetic experience. Learning by experience in art is intrinsically linked to our biological brain activity. In fact, neuroaesthetic tries to explain what happens in our brain when one has an aesthetic experience. As a state of mind, research shows that aesthetic experience affects one emotions, cognition and physical state. According with such thought process, I developed a teaching model named Aesthetic Reflection Teaching Model (ARTm). The ARTm follows a postmodern theoretical and curricular framework that integrates aesthetic experience and aesthetic education based on different aesthetic experience models of information processing illustrated by neuroaesthetic scientists. The model can be used by educators to help students express what they experience in an affective and a cognitive manner when they see a contemporary work of art. At the end of the learning process the student can express or plan what they are going to do with the knowledge acquired, in other words, express an action with a new creative project.
With Dr. Mathew Pelowski during his research presentation about education and aesthetic experiences in museums. Canada (2018)
In Casa Cortés during a conference about neuroaesthetic.
Through my research using neuroaesthetic models and working with art teachers, I found that teachers improved in their openness, creativity, flexibility and reflection skills and they were more aware about their own emotions when uncertain instances arose during classes. Additionally, as artists, they found themselves more creative and motivated. There is a lot of information that said that we learn through emotions, but when we experience a work of art, it is very difficult to identify which emotion is felt unless you are an expert. I suggest that we need more research on the multiple ways that we can create knowledge about art, ourselves and our society through the emotions that we feel during an aesthetic experience. In this direction, ask how an aesthetic experience and aesthetic education impact the learning process and skills like self-efficiency and self-awareness and how aesthetic emotions identified by neuraesthetic research change positively or negatively some predispositions to learn during the aesthetic judgement. It would be interesting a certain the impact of ARTm in metacognition and creativity skills in the cognitive aspects of research.
Visual Arts Teacher workshop with contemporary works of art and neuroaesthetic.
First 8 teachers that became certificate in Aesthetic Reflection Teaching Model (ARTm) in 2018.
Reflection is what guide learning.
Joy is learning through the arts.