Carnegie Mellon University
March 29, 2011

Press Release: Carnegie Mellon Hosts "Teach 4 Amerika" Rally Promoting Change in Art School Education

Contact: Lauren Goshinski / 412-268-1533 /
Teresa Thomas / 412-268-2900 /

teach4amerika logoPITTSBURGH—Carnegie Mellon University's School of Art, in collaboration with The Andy Warhol Museum and The Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon, will host "Teach 4 Amerika," a new project by The Bruce High Quality Foundation (BHQF) to promote change in American art education. The project is presented by Creative Time, the New York-based nonprofit public art presenter.

The Pittsburgh rally and public event will take place at 4 p.m., Saturday, April 2 at CMU's Doherty Hall, room 2210.

The BHQF says "Teach 4 Amerika" aims to empower artists to create the education they need and not beholden them to a system that professionalizes them out of their own specificity.

"Teach 4 Amerika" will combine the spectacle and energy of a political rally with the substantive dialog of a conversation series, featuring a multimedia presentation by the group, balloons, T-shirts and music from local pep bands. In addition, the BHQF will organize an intimate conversation between invited students and a group of arts professionals to begin transforming the ideas and optimism of the rallies into real change. The conversations, hosted by local alternative art spaces, will attempt to take the pulse of the local educational situation and imagine what it could become, culminating in a series of concrete "first steps" in a plan to realize these visions.

"Teach 4 Amerika" is a five-week, 11-city, coast-to-coast road trip that crosses state lines and institutional boundaries to inspire and enable local art students to define the future of their own educational experience.

Traveling the byways of America in a limousine painted as a school bus, the BHQF will visit university art departments, art schools, art institutions, and alternative spaces across the nation, bringing together concerned educators, artists, arts administrators, and - most importantly - students to brainstorm on the future of art schools. What are they for? How should they be organized? If not for careers, what is the essence of art itself? These fundamental questions have long haunted artists, and the BHQF is interested in putting the questions back in the hands of students across America through a combination of dynamic public rallies and intimate conversations.

The project calls for a national rethinking of the current art education system, and will provide an opportunity for the BHQF to present on the issues facing artists seeking an education, as well as catalyze discussions with students. With the multitude of institutionalized fine arts degree tracks throughout the country - which increase in number, enrollment, and cost each year - the BHQF has been actively calling for students to organize in New York City and attend its unaccredited, alternative and completely free school, The Bruce High Quality Foundation University. The "Teach 4 Amerika" tour is a rallying effort to begin this conversation on a national scale and to encourage a new generation of students, artists and educators to imagine what is possible for art education in America.

"'The Teach 4 Amerika' tour will highlight the contradictions and crisis operating at the center of art education in the United States today," said Nato Thompson, chief curator of Creative Time. "With student protests emerging in different parts of the country and overseas, we find that the question of not only tuition, but the point of education itself — if not purely to feed workers into the market, what is its larger social function — is gaining widespread attention. ... The Bruce High Quality Foundation wants to catalyze a national discussion for and by art students, making clear that the structure of art education is a construct and the paradigm can be altered."
For more information on the "Teach 4 Amerika" tour dates, locations and partnering organizations, visit