Francis H. Allende-Pellot
THESIS ABSTRACT 2005
ArtseeUs: A Personal Journey Designing a Website and the Process of Networking in Search of Support and Community
School chairs Digital Photo by F. Allende 2004
In its seedling stage of growth, www.artsee.us serves as a pilot research project, taking root through and because of artist-educators like myself, providing a better understanding of effective networking. Artseeus explores the process of cultivating a virtual community and resource directory, primarily out in the field where artist-educator networks are non-existent (or exist, but unfortunately out of reach at our work sites). I’ve experienced isolation firsthand while working at a public school in Chicago, Illinois. I felt marginalized. I felt left behind by the administration. For months, my experience seemed entangled with anxiety, affecting my teaching, and wilting my relationships both inside and outside the walls of my school. It became crucial for me to focus my attention on the ways teachers were supported. And importantly, I focused on the way I weeded through teaching obstacles for support, paying special attention to the type of support I sought. Networking as a process of professional development was missing, and the opportunities to network were scarce.
Art room &
Work-place learning-place Digital Photo by F. Allende 2004
The main questions of my thesis, address process and solutions for artist-educator professional development, for example: what processes are in place that assist artist-educators to flourish through networking? Are artist-educators finding support via network resources and, if so, is an online resource a method that can address the need for support and networking between them? Additionally, I ask, in regard to my own experience and development, in what way(s) will this process of creating a network nurture me and serve as a channel toward re-focusing my career as an artist-educator? I will investigate the process of networking and I will survey the supportive networking needs of educators in the field of visual arts. The purpose of Artseeus is to facilitate and grow professional, artistic and social support. Furthermore, I will create an online magazine for the purpose of professional development, and after May of 2005, I expect to continue my inquiries for this study and maintain the online resource through its evolving stages of growth.
Francis H. Allende-Pellot received a BA in visual arts from University of Illinois in 1990 and her K-12 teaching certificate from SAIC in 1996. She co-created K-6 after-school arts programs at District U-46 during 1997-2003. Currently Francis works at UIC as a Visiting Research Specialist.
Thesis Advisor: Giselle Mercier, Instructor, Art Education
Thesis Reader: John Ploof, Assistant Professor, Art Education; Director, MAAE Program
Second Reader: Lisa Hochtritt,Assistant Professor, Art Education
Rebecca Keller,Adjunct Associate Professor, Art History, Theory, and Criticism; Art Education