Creative Expressions of Hope and Aspiration among Refugees in a Community Art Program
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis case study comprises an art-making workshop conducted over four two hour sessions, with refugee participants of a not-for-profit organization called Owl and Panther in the Southwestern United States. Through this study, the researcher, who is a volunteer at the organization, and a migrant himself, sought to understand how art educators in such community programs might, through expressive art-making opportunities, understand the hopes and aspirations of new refugee immigrants in their new environment in order to design meaningful and relevant art curriculum in more structured teaching programs. Survey questionnaires, participant artwork, and researcher’s field notes form the data for the study, which are analyzed to identify themes representing their depictions of positive experiences from their past to bring forward, as well as their current, and future goals and vision for their new communities. The study reveals play, education, a strong sense of social responsibility, and a desire for economic viability to be significant ideas expressed. It makes recommendations for suggested materials and artistic projects to be used in future similar workshops, for greater effect, in response to participants expressive making. The study is set in a framework of multicultural and social justice art education, expressive art therapy and community-based art education. The study is inspired by my status as an immigrant and international student in the United States and the recent new Executive orders in the country at the time of this study.
Degree ProgramGraduate College