The future of gallery and visual arts education

In response to the latest government guidance relating to COVID-19 (or Coronavirus), this event has been cancelled.

We are discussing alternatives to the residential format and will be in touch with delegates in due course.

Join Engage and Engage Scotland at this intensive professional development event for mid-career and senior gallery and visual arts educators, hosted by Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA), V&A Dundee and Hospitalfield, Arbroath

It was wonderful to take time out of an incredibly busy schedule to reflect on my current practise, my job role/job title and have conversations with colleagues in the sector that provided thought and exchange

Peer learning event participant, 2017

Take time out to share and reflect on current gallery and arts education practice and research with colleagues from across the UK and beyond. Attendees are invited to present or run an activity or workshop for their peers at DCA or V&A Dundee. There will be visits to Hospitalfield, Arbroath, and to other visual arts venues in Dundee.

This is a timely moment to reflect on the future of gallery and visual arts education. Engage was founded thirty years ago, while DCA and its learning programme celebrate twenty years of practice this year. Conversely, V&A Dundee is a new venture but based on a rich lineage of education work at a wide variety of museums and galleries across the UK. It is particularly appropriate to be holding this event in Dundee, a city which has embraced cultural regeneration over the past few years.

We invite colleagues to reflect on what the future of gallery and visual arts education could look like in the next three decades in the UK and internationally. Art and design education are under pressure across the UK, as are resources for artists and arts and cultural organisations for education and participatory activity. Beyond this, the world faces huge environmental, social and financial challenges.

As practitioners, we often rush from one project to the next. Engage’s peer learning event is a fantastic opportunity to take the long view, to think about how your own work and that of your organisation can have an impact.

We will discuss whether there is an activist role for gallery and visual arts education to take in tackling global issues. Can the lack of cultural democracy be challenged? How can visual arts organisations embrace greater artistic diversity and a workforce that better reflects the communities they serve?

The programme will also include presentations from the following speakers:

  • Sarah Derrick, Head of Learning, DCA
  • Joanna Mawdsley, Head of Learning, V&A Dundee
  • Lucy Byatt, Director, Hospitalfield, Arbroath

Dates, times and locations

Tuesday 24 March
10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Day 1 Venue: DCA
Wednesday 25 March
10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Day 2 Venue: V&A Dundee
Thursday 26 March
10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Day 3 Venue: Hospitalfield, Arbroath

Days 1 and 2 will include afternoon visits to The McManus Gallery and Cooper Gallery. Full programme to be announced.

Costs to attend

  • Engage Personal Members: £150
  • Engage Organisational Members: £250
  • Non-Members: £300

The attendance fee covers all entry costs, speakers, light refreshments and lunches on Tuesday 24, Wednesday 25 and Thursday 26 March 2020. It does not include accommodation, drinks, dinner, travel around Dundee and to and around Arbroath. There will be opportunities for participants to have dinner together on Tuesday 24 March, but the cost of this is not covered by Engage.

Engage membership starts from just £3.25 a month and comes with a host of benefits, including up to 50% off our training and events. Find out more about becoming an Engage member.

Booking closes Monday 24 February 2020

Supported places

Engage is pleased to offer two subsidised places for individuals to attend this event, at a cost of £100 per place. No expenses will be included.

Application deadline: Wednesday 5 February 2020.

Please note that applicants for these places must be personal members of Engage. Applications for supported places may be made via the booking form below. Applicants will be informed whether they have been successful or not by Wednesday 12 February 2020.

About the venues

About DCA

Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA) is an internationally renowned centre for contemporary art that enables audiences, artists and participants to see, experience and create. With two beautiful large-scale gallery spaces, two thriving cinema screens, a busy print studio, an award-winning learning programme, and a packed programme of events, workshops, classes and activities aimed at all ages and abilities, DCA is one of the most successful arts organisations in the UK.

Visit the DCA website for access information

About V&A Dundee

As Scotland’s first design museum, V&A Dundee tells a global story, investigating the international importance of design alongside presenting Scotland’s outstanding design achievements.

V&A Dundee features world-class exhibitions alongside the permanent Scottish Design Galleries, and a changing programme of commissions, events and activities.

Visit the V&A Dundee website for access information

About Hospitalfield

Hospitalfield’s contemporary arts programme is anchored in the visual arts yet encourages interdisciplinarity. Hospitalfield maintains strong national and international working partnerships with the aim of making Hospitalfield a meeting place and cultural catalyst in the working lives of artists and creative professionals in Scotland and far beyond.

About The McManus Gallery

The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum offers a fascinating insight into Dundee and with 8 galleries to explore, there is a wealth of information to discover in our exhibitions of art, history and the environment. The McManus runs a regular programme of activities and events, including crafty fun activities from the Creative Learning team and captivating behind the scenes tours from the Collections Unit.

Visit the McManus Gallery website for access information

About Cooper Gallery

Cooper Gallery at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, University of Dundee is internationally recognised as a distinctive platform in Scotland for its radical curatorial research, international approach and focus on critical discourse in contemporary art and culture. Advocating the pooling of knowledge from different disciplines, Cooper Gallery’s diverse programme implements a sustained and rigorous critical engagement. With four gallery spaces devoted to an integrated programme of new commissions, exhibitions, off-site projects, public engagement events, artists’/writers’ residencies and publishing, Cooper Gallery’s unique new model of curating, grounded in discursive, participatory and process-led strategies has led to projects with internationally esteemed artists, curators and organisations. Acknowledging current political concerns Cooper Gallery’s exhibition and event programme and publishing projects explore the full breadth of the creative, social and educational impacts of contemporary arts practice. 

Access: The gallery is on two floors. The first floor has ramped access and a disabled toilet. The second floor is accessible via lift and for wheelchair access via a stairclimber. Large print versions of the exhibition information handout are available, please ask our Guides.

For access enquiries please contact