The National Art Education Association (NAEA) is a 20,000 member association comprised of pre-Kindergarten - grade twelve teachers, college and university professors and researchers, administrators and museum educators. NAEA has a commitment to core values which include mentoring, networking and collaborating, participation in art education conferences, development and dissemination of exemplary resources, building a professional community, and valuing diversity. The NAEA Committee on Multi-Ethnic Concerns (COMC) is an issues affiliate dedicated to supporting principles of diversity in art education programs. The COMC THINK TANK also marks the inauguration of a partnership for COMC and the Center for Race and Culture at the Maryland Institute of Art. The Center's mission is to address the difficult issues, questions and dynamics of race and culture focusing on historical, contemporary and future art making that shape the scope and character of the visual arts. The Maryland Institute College of Art is a world class institution providing cutting edge technologies and visionary approaches to creating 21st century art education learning communities.
We anticipate engagement in open dialogues regarding African American aesthetics and curriculum design with artists and art educators from across the country. We want to bring to the forefront the important visual contributions and scholarship that are deserving of consideration both in the way we provide teacher training and curriculum design and encourage the formulation of effective learning communities within public schools. THINK TANK will become the formulation of future COMC summer teacher institutes. THINK TANK will have six panels designed to facilitate this important dialogue. Topics will include communities and visual art as a tool for social justice, culturally specific research as delineated from the perspectives of both artists and art educators, digital literacy as invitation and access to learning, artist as researcher, and possibilities for transformative aesthetic curriculum design.