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Friday, May 21, 2010

ARTICLE BY PITT-BRADFORD ART PROFESSOR APPEARS IN TEACHING ARTIST JOURNAL

Kong Ho, associate professor of art at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, mixes paint while Fretz students Rodney Jones (seated) and Chad McCalla look on. Rodney and Chad took part in a mural project with Ho last spring at Fretz.

ARTICLE BY PITT-BRADFORD ART PROFESSOR

APPEARS IN TEACHING ARTIST JOURNAL



BRADFORD, Pa. – An article by Kong Ho, associate professor of art at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, about two local murals appears in the current issue of Teaching Artist Journal.

The Teaching Artist Journal is a peer-reviewed journal published by the Taylor and Francis Group. The article, titled “Mural Painting as Inclusive Art Learning Experience,” presents two case studies of murals Ho worked on in the Bradford community, one in Blaisdell Hall on campus and the other at Floyd C. Fretz Middle School.

The article gives historical, theoretical and practical insights into the role mural painting can play in inclusive education.

The Blaisdell Hall mural was designed and painted by Ho and 10 Pitt-Bradford students in 2008. Most of the students had no art experience. The mural depicts the disciplines taught in Blaisdell Hall, which is home to the Division of Communication and the Arts.

In spring 2009, Ho worked with Fretz art teacher Janelle Turk and life skills teacher Mike Gow and their students to design and create a mural to brighten up the life skills classroom.

The student artists were 26 members of the Art Club and eight students with disabilities. As a teaching fellow of VSA Arts, the premier organization for artists with disabilities in the country, Ho embraced the chance to work with students of all abilities and foster their interaction through a collaborative project.

“I feel that teaching a mural painting workshop is not just about teaching knowledge of mural,” Ho said, “it is also about sharing values and attitudes, discovering what others think and experience. From my observation, students are more open in expressing themselves when the social barrier between teacher and students disappears during the collaborative painting process.”

Ho is currently teaching as a Fulbright fellow at the National Academy of Art in Sofia, Bulgaria, where he and his students are painting a Bulgarian-American collaborative mural that incorporates images associated with both countries.

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