Exchange between students of art education from Switzerland and the South Caucasus / Austausch zwischen Studierenden der Kunstpädagogik aus der Schweiz und dem Südkaukasus

About the project
„Art Education – Inter-Culturally“

A three-year exchange project for future art teachers by artasfoundation, the Swiss foundation for art in regions of conflict. Each year three Swiss universities and one partner university in the South Caucasus are sending students and lecturers to take part in the exchange.

How is art taught in public schools in the South Caucasus? What are the educational goals of the curriculum there? And what do these look like in different Swiss cantons? How do the – sometimes implicit – values and orientations of the respective societies flow into school teaching? What is the understanding of art in the different countries’ approaches to teaching? In an exchange organised by artasfoundation between students of art education from three Swiss universities and partner universities in the South Caucasus the participants were able to explore such questions in joint practical work.

In the spring of 2022, the exchange took place between Armenia and Switzerland. Students and lecturers from the State Pedagogical University of Armenia meet colleagues from the Zurich University of the Arts, the School of Art and Design of the Lucerne University of Applied Arts, and the Institute for Art and Design Education of the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland. The first workshop took place in March – eleven Armenian students and lecturers spent two weeks in Zurich. For the second workshop and return visit students and lecturers from Lucerne, Basel and Zurich travelled to Yerevan in April. In both workshops, lessons were prepared jointly and held in public schools. In addition to deepening their sensitivity to cultural differences, the participants made new friends. Furthermore, the experience will make it easier for future art teachers from Switzerland to work in schools with students from other cultures.

In the fall of 2022 and winter of 2023, the exchange took place between Georgia and Switzerland. Here the Ilia State University was the partner institution of the three Swiss Universities. It began with a two-week workshop in October, during which 14 students and lecturers from Switzerland travelled to Tbilisi. In turn, they welcomed their Georgian colleagues in Lucerne in January/February 2023.

In the spring of 2024, two 14-day workshops were held in Basel, Switzerland, and Yerevan, Armenia. These workshops involved 18 art education students from the Armenian State Pedagogical University and the Basel Academy of Art and Design, the two universities hosting the final round of the project. Additionally, participants from Zurich University of the Arts and the School of Art and Design at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts joined the group. They participated in teaching activities at various schools in both regions.