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Out of Boundaries: Collectively Making Learning Spaces Using Drawing and Stitching

Article – Published 18th Jul 17

This article explores ‘people-oriented’ collective making practices that question the emphasis on individuality currently prized in ‘object-oriented’ art and design education. It will first outline my observations of the kind of knowledge acquired through participation in collective making, in particular how the rhythms and patterns of skilled hand-stitching reflect the crafting of mutuality and cooperation within a group. It will then present new research conducted as part of an AUB Research Fellowship award in 2015 that began to explore some of these ideas in an educational setting, this time observing the rhythms and patterns of mark-making. This has raised questions concerning the ways drawing collectively could explore the sometimes inarticulate boundaries between individuals. Finally, if the potential of these types of collective creative activities includes exploring patterns of interaction between individuals to enhance the important human dimensions of exchange and collaboration within art and design practice more widely, the article provokes questions about the value and place of learning through non-assessed group activity outside the boundaries of the curriculum.

A version of this paper was first published in: Malcolm Ferris, (ed), Making Futures: Craft and the return of the maker in a post-global sustainably aware society. Vol 4. ISSN 2042-1664. Available at:, and is kindly reproduced with permission from Plymouth College of Art.

Publication details

Publication status Published
Publication title Creative Pedagogies Imprint
Publishers name Arts University Bournemouth
Volume Vol. 1 Issue 1
Number of pages 12
Page range 27–38