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Have Some Imagination: Towards a manifesto for arts education


BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

Baltic x Northumbria University Institute

Call for conference contributions

In the context of a contemporary crisis in the provision of arts education, this two-day conference will newly consider the transformational value of creative learning for envisioning and sustaining collective futures.

As a result of educational policy changes and the impact of austerity on arts spending over recent decades, the delivery of arts education in schools, colleges, and universities has been pitched into an unprecedented crisis. Across different geo-political contexts, a narrowly financialised discourse of the arts has variously come to predominate in public culture, often remaindering arts education as comparatively unworthy of financial investment, its ‘outcomes’ seen as being of lesser value than more easily monetised forms arising from other disciplines.

How else might we assess the value of an arts education? How important, even transformative, are the imaginative, world-making capacities of creative learning for society, the planet, the economy? And how should a changed understanding of what or who we think art education is for affect the way in which it should be delivered?

Have Some Imagination will be a free international conference hosted by the Baltic x Northumbria University Institute in Gateshead/Newcastle UK. It will bring together academics, school teachers, artists, community activists, students, policy makers and leaders of the creative industries to address present-day challenges. Activities will involve talks, workshops, keynote lectures, and a collective envisioning project to strategise for an arts education of tomorrow.

Sessions will include presentations around the following themes:

  • Imagining alternative worlds
  • Rethinking national curricula
  • Arts education: a public good?
  • Learning in cultural institutions
  • How does an artist learn?
  • Experimental cultures: then and now
  • Education for the creative industries?
  • Arts education for whom?

Propose a contribution!

If you have a contribution to make to this event please send:

  • a proposal of no more than 250 words for a twenty minute presentation
  • a short bio of no more than 100 words

Deadline for submissions: 6pm Friday 27 September 2024. 

Shortlisting will take place after the closing date and successful proposals will be notified by Friday 4 October 2024.

Proposals and questions about the conference should be sent to 


Event Details

BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art
South Shore Road


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