Historical Perspectives in Art

How Art Embodies Story: An Exploration of Basquiat Through a Physically Integrated Dance Performance

Melissa McCune reports on a recent dance project of Full Radius Dance—a company that integrates disabled and non-disabled dancers—which interpreted the works of artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. As a child, Basquiat experienced a debilitating injury that greatly influenced his art. Encountering groundbreaking works such as these, McCune explains, can help clinicians look beyond basic anatomy to see the “layered nature” of pain and disability....

Reviving and Reflecting on “Portrait of Spirit: One Story at a Time”

Both a book and an exhibit, Portrait of Spirit: One Story at a Time by Billy Howard and Maggie Holtzberg offers new perspectives while challenging the way we view the lived disability experience. Using stunning photographs and beautifully written narratives from Portrait of Spirit, this piece serves as an ode to the groundbreaking stories that started it all while advocating for continued societal change for people living with disabilities....

Historical Perspectives in Art: The Value of Art History in a Pandemic: Teaching as a Healing Force

In this powerful reflection, Siobhan Conaty shows how art history as a health humanities discipline can provide two uniquely different (yet equally important) teaching methods for students reckoning with a health crisis. One negative (a critical reading of graphic pandemic images) and one positive (looking to art as a powerful healing instrument), each serves an important purpose. Conaty details the positive approach she recently chose for her students -- emphasizing art as a healing force....
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