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Radical Imagination CoLab

Radical Imagination CoLab connects art, activism, and education in order to create generative spaces that can envision a world grounded on equity, justice, and humanity. The arts provide a unique set of strategies to envision otherwise and to propose radical alternatives to current realities and unjust structures. Our work views collaborative practices and co-construction of knowledge with the community as an integral component of creating social change in and through the arts. Socially engaged artists, radical educators, and movement builders inspire our interdisciplinary work in practice-based research, teacher training, curricular development, anti-racism education, and community art + education interventions. 

Current Projects: 

Lennox Hill Professional Development

Lenox Hill Professional Development / Inquiry to Action Group (ItAG)

Responding to a request to support artist educators working with youth programs at the Lenox Hill Neighbohrood House we will be facilitating a five session collective inquiry process focused on the question: How do we build anti-racist practices into our teaching and learning in and through the arts? The ItAG or Inquiry to Action Group model is premised on the notion of collaborative investigation and building a shared commitment to put new knowledge into action. This collective inquiry process will use a combination of readings, artworks, and opportunities to connect theory with practice through weekly discussions that explore anti-racist educational practices and dispositions. We will engage in creative inquiry around our own positionalities and locations from which we teach and connect that to anti-racist dispositions and practices in and through the arts with our students.

Beyond Symbol: Culture + Reparations Project

Beyond Symbol: Cultural + Reparations, Fourth Arts Block, NYC 

We are partnering with The Fourth Arts Block, NYC (FABnyc), a non-profit cultural organization whose mission is to strengthen the cultural vitality of the Lower East Side in order to support a reparations initiative using art and culture in NYC. Our collaboration includes a collaborative research-based art intervention and curriculum development project that makes visible the hidden histories of African-Americans in the Lower East Side (LES), a first step towards advocating for reparations at the policy level. The LES previously included a significant population of African Americans before they were forced out of lower Manhattan and settled uptown in Harlem and other neighborhoods. Graduate students enrolled in two required courses for the Art, Education and Community Practice program are doing historical research in order to design and implement an art activist intervention and write curricula that connects this important past to contemporary activist efforts towards justice and equity.

Our Team

Dipti Desai

Professor of Art and Art Education

Jessica Hamlin

Clinical Assistant Professor of Art + Education