A Critical Analysis of Artists’ Engagement with Education Programmes at Tate, from 1968-2015, as drawn from the archive

Ghanchi-Goemans, Ayesha. 2016. A Critical Analysis of Artists’ Engagement with Education Programmes at Tate, from 1968-2015, as drawn from the archive. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

Education and Learning at Tate has flourished in the past fifty years, from being a small and supplementary function to the usual workings of the gallery in 1968, to currently being placed at the centre of the institution’s function. Artist-educators have worked with education and learning programmes throughout this 47 year history and have been instrumental in developing pedagogies throughout this period. This thesis examines how artists have engaged with learning programmes at Tate from 1968-2015. For this, I have researched the archive at Tate Britain to find examples of education practices and have analysed the varying pedagogical purposes and philosophies developed by the department since 1968. From this research, I have identified that the pedagogical philosophies developed by artist-educators were heavily influenced by the head of the department. I therefore decided to split the research into the five configurations of the departmental structure from 1968 to 2015. I focused on one case study from each phase of the department’s history and interviewed its associated artist-educator and strategist. From this research I found that pedagogical approaches were influenced by concurrent trends in art practices and discourses around art and gallery education. Furthermore, I discovered education programmes throughout this history related to an evolving concept of encouraging ‘agency’ in the gallery. I have grounded these case studies in the context of a critical pedagogic analyses, paying attention to how pedagogy is developed in relations to notions of agency. I conclude with a discussion examining the intersection of department policy, changing notions of agency and the pedagogical identities of the learner and artist.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Identification Number (DOI):


Additional Information:

Thesis written under joint supervision by Goldsmiths College and Tate London. An indefinite embargo applies to the full text due to the presence of third-party copyright material. Printed thesis available in Goldsmiths Library for reference only.


Education, Art, Critical Pedagogy, Identity Politics

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Educational Studies > Centre for the Arts and Learning


31 December 2016

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

19 Jan 2017 12:09

Last Modified:

07 Sep 2022 17:12



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