Claudia Sohrens – GS Faculty
Describe your teaching philosophy and your reasons for becoming a teacher.
My own experience has taught me the value of combining different practices and techniques with various approaches for interpretation, understanding, and the appreciation of art, design, photography, new media, film, architecture, performance, literature and philosophy-it has prepared me for teaching visual culture in different contexts and from a variety of perspectives.
Recognizing the inherently different learning paths of students and creating an open and dynamic learning environment that will intrigue and challenge both teacher and students is important to me. Diverse methodologies, including gender studies, criticism, critical theory, historicism, are essential to engage the full richness of the subject and will provide students with the opportunity to investigate their work independently in both a cultural and studio context. This will foster change and facilitate a connection between collaborative and personal work and provide the means for contextualizing work in the wider world.
Do you see a relationship between teaching and your own photographic practice?
As artists, we have become simultaneously “the researched” and “the researcher.”
My own work is an investigation of the political, cultural, economic and conceptual implications behind archives and cultural repositories. Teaching in various programs at institutions and universities that represent a diverse range of students, educational goals and outcomes, has helped me develop new and creative approaches to research projects within an arts context. These approaches relate specifically to cross-disciplinary collaborations between artists and image-makers, writers, historians, scholars, and institutions such as libraries, archives, collections and schools.