Teaching Interdisciplinary Artistic Research

Publication Type:



Diane Carp


Amsterdam University of the Arts, Amsterdam (2017)






Arts educators from the arts disciplines of drama, dance, music, visual arts and media follow a two-year course in interdisciplinary artistic collaboration as part of their master program at the  Amsterdam University of the Arts. The emphasis is on individual and collaborative, artistic research processes under the guidance of an artist and an arts educator. This qualitative study describes the didactic program set out by the artist and inventories the perceptions of the students about their learning. Data was collected through observations of the classes, interviews with the artist, and a series of written reflections from the students.

This report describes how the artist deconstructed his own artistic research processes and translated those into an experiential program which involved a scaffolding of research skills, the development of collective research questions and experimentation, and critical reflection. He developed the class into a working collective by centering investigations around themes and concrete material which created new and common experiences for the group.

The students reported that the multidisciplinary make-up of the class working as a collective created for them an interdisciplinary setting. The investigation of themes gave them neutral starting points for their artistic research. Through team collaborations, the students discovered more about each other’s disciplines and work strategies as practitioners.

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