The Artist/Researcher/Teacher

The Artist/Researcher/Teacher

I identify with the artist/researcher/teacher (a/r/t) construct born from the methodology A/r/tography. In this post borrowed from, I describe what it means to be an a/r/t in practice.

   The a/r/t is a single self-concept forged from three intersecting roles (artist, researcher, and teacher) that function with a tightly woven interactive and interinfluential synergy. These roles are automatically integrated by virtue of their concurrent presence (Irwin & de Cosson, 2004); after all, when I am in teacher mode, I am still an artist, and when I am making art, I am building skills that I will inevitably call on in the instruction of my art students. Further to that, since 2007 I have been a graduate student interested in researching creativity in education. I have illustrated this triadic relationship in the Venn diagram below, wherein the a/r/t construct would be located directly in the center—the brown section.

Screen Shot 2013-08-02 at 6.07.47 PM.
It is symbolically coloured as such to visually and figuratively represent a mélange of the three primary roles, shown in the three primary colours: red, blue, and yellow. In colour theory, when all three primary colours are mixed together, the result is a brownish hue. Chalmers (as cited in Irwin & de Cosson, 2004) points out, “research, art, and activism are [not] mutually exclusive terms” (p. 19). Further, Irwin and de Cosson argue that this unified triad is vital to any progressive art education practice. It is from this perspective that I question, examine, think, theorize, critique, synthesize, write, create, and come to understand, and it is in this context that I have found belonging and purpose in my PhD program. Self-identifying as an a/r/t is what allows me to thrive in my environment, be it the classroom, the studio, the office, or otherwise. I hope that Raising Creativity will be a testament to that.



Irwin, R., & de Cosson, A. (2004). A/R/Tography: Rendering self through arts based living inquiry.

.    Vancouver, Canada: Pacific Education Press.

Posted by Rebecca Zak

Categorised under creative work, rationale
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