Welcome to the website of Susan M. Coles, Artist & Arts, Creativity & Educational Consultant.

Busy with lots of projects....

A quick summary of the year so far (or part of it)…..

If I have a major new focus, then it is my role within InSEA,The International Society for Education through Art. I am delighted to be one of the three World Councillors who represent Europe and have already volunteered to get involved in the social media and networking side of the organisation and to help to write a Manifesto for the Society, which represents the world as it is now. With Council members being spread over the world, we will conduct most of our discussions by Skype and email. It does make you think how on earth they managed before these were available! Typewriters, letters and snail mail no doubt.
Updates from this are here- the 2018 InSEA Manifesto was agreed and written with suggestions from many people and created in a graphic format (English) and also translated in many languages (with more to come) so please feel free to share this with your contacts, friends, colleagues, and students. Here is the link

I was so pleased to be invited to attend InSEA Conferences/Congresses this year in Cairo, Helsinki and Thessaloniki. I presented at all of them and also watched and enjoyed many presentations and took part in some excellent workshops. Soaking up other cultures has also been fascinating, as is the renewal of friendships and the making of new connections.

The NSEAD Conference in Oxford (June 29/30) was really busy and interesting with a focus on the visually literate citizen of the now and the future. Thank you also to the Royal Academy in London who invited me to be part of their panel talking about the importance of art education on the evening of the 29th June.

I have also loved being a part of AccessArt as a Trustee and intend to continue to be both an ambassador and a champion for this wonderful organisation which promotes and showcases excellence for art education.

And as a Co-Director of the CIC group, Monkfish Productions in Newcastle, I hope to support them as they move into a new era and location and challenges, creative and otherwise.

I will continue my work as Secretary to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Art, Craft, and Design in Education, on behalf of NSEAD (National Society for Education in Art and Design) This also gives me a role on NSEAD Council and I hope to also use that presence to involve NSEAD more with the global work of InSEA. Part of this work is working with other arts and/or education APPGs in a larger group which we call Drawn Together. There is so much common ground that we need to explore and support each other with. We have had two big Drawn Together sessions so far and hopefully will plan another one for the new parliamentary year. Read the Gomersal Primary School blog about their visit to speak at an APPG because it’s a joy to read.

Needless to say, the work with NEATEN (North East Art Teacher Educator Network) continues and supported by an excellent steering group, we celebrated our tenth birthday in 2017, with several events, including an exhibition of photos at Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art.
This included an annual Big Draw CPD session, a public Big Draw event, a Sketchbook Circle residential, an exhibition of photographs of those active in the network which started with our tenth birthday party (27th October).

I’ve also presented some keynote speeches, one down at the Cambridge Arts Marketplace in September, and two at the Liverpool Art Teacher event in October. I also spoke at the OCR Creative Forum – also in Cambridge. I have been a part of the STEAMCo #ARTCONNECTS event in London (see blog) and was proud to be part of this.

I made a keynote speech and opened the 2018 East London school art exhibition in July, thank you for asking me, it was an astonishing and diverse show of primary and secondary work, in all mediums.

I did the keynote speech at the first United Learning Trust Art Conference in July, where they had a focus on key stage 3 as a solid foundation for learning in the subject.

I was invited to open the Leeds for Learning/Leeds ArtForms Secondary Art Teacher Conference with a keynote speech in July and used this opportunity to share the inSEA Manifesto as part of that. I stayed for the day to work with facilitators and presenters in workshops and planning sessions, which was very enjoyable. I think Leeds has been such a great place to be this summer because……..

I was invited to be part of the PLAN-PREPARE-PROVIDE Art History Residential again this year, in the summer, at the Univeristy of Leeds. 2.5 days with an incredibly dedicated group of teachers- who worked long hours and days at a remarkable rate, on a series of great learning tasks. Also, back to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park for our third Arts Council Collection Teacher day. I will also do the keynote speech in Leeds for the Annual High School Art Teacher Conference.

We had our THIRD Arts Council Collection Day in April- which I facilitated and tickets were sold out quickly. This year the focus was on artist teacher and we also had great reative workshop opportunities run by Paul Raymond, Chris Howlett and Yvette Hughes. Once again, a great group of teachers and trainee teachers made the day special and unique.

We also have a brand new primary art network starting in the north east. *PATERN*- Primary-Art-Teacher-Educator-Regional-Network (how clever is that?) This is very exciting and based on the same model as NEATEN is- and I hope it will have the same impact in supporting teachers. And- we organised and created a regional primary Art Conference in June, at the Customs House in South Shields, whisch was well attended and received excellent feedback and praise. Thanks to my colleagues Paul Carney and Elizabeth Kane for making this happen.

NEATEN and Big Draw October 20th 2018.

Keynote speech in October, at the Plymouth Art Teacher Conference. Details to follow.

Special appearance at this importance Arts Conference: alonsgide Will Gompertz (BBC) and philsopher Nigel Warburton.
As voices are being raised saying that arts education is at a crisis point, Cranleigh School is bringing together leaders in the world of the arts to discuss the role of the arts in education and to seek ways ahead. Specifically, the conference will explore advocacy of the arts, their role in facilitating the development of creativity and their educational value.

and of course more- watch this space as things develop!



2021 days ago

hope to make the West Yorkshire course (travel and headteacher permitting.)


343 days ago

You put some of us to shame with all this work! Keep up the good work. Love following your art adventures via Twitter.

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