Becoming through the senses: towards artistic ways of being in the world

Six European partners work together on the central question: How can a sensory approach and an artistic attitude contribute to an education that leads to a more connected and sustainable world?

Through artistic interventions and workshops, we want to demonstrate that this approach can and should become the heart of all education.

Main objective

SenseSquared’s main objective is to show that a sensuous and artistic attitude can open up new and unexpected perspectives in any educational setting. It is joyous and rewarding for everyone involved. It has a profound and lasting impact on the individual level. Moreover, it is conducive for deep learning and can align with the regular school curriculum.

How can we relate to each other? How can we relate to the world? How can artists, researchers, teachers and children alike, shape the education that our society needs? These are some of the main questions that will be explored by the project.

We want to demonstrate that a shift towards such an attitude can be accomplished in a relatively short amount of time. 

An artful and sensuous approach

The ‘temporal arts’ (music, dance, drama & performance art) can provide a model to explore what it means to experiment, to improvise, to compose within the context of shared and embodied experiences and sense-based activities. As such, they reflect and augment the main ingredients of life itself. Using the musicality of the mother-infant dyad as an evolutionary prototype for education, we can lead the way to a more fruitful educational approach.

SenseSquared will demonstrate that this new approach:

  • isn’t difficult to understand and apply,
  • can gradually be integrated into the existing school system and the actual curriculum,
  • has a profound positive impact on children-teachers interaction,
  • deeply and intuitively connects with the humanity of teachers and children,
  • contributes substantially to the intrinsic motivation and joy of learning.

Towards societal change

SenseSquared highlights the need for a form of education that promotes diversity and fosters communication, one that enhances creative problem-solving, allowing for unexpected outcomes. We need an education where all children and teachers alike can flourish in connection with each other and the world. This is yet another area where a more sensuous and artistic approach can pave the way. Art is the glue that connects diversity to inclusion, and inclusion to a sense of mutual understanding. Art can open up a wealth of completely new approaches, leading towards an education that is rooted in our relation to each other and to the world. 

A hands-on approach

SenseSquared proposes a hands-on approach from the very start, with exercises, contexts, tools and kits that are very easy to pick up, and immediately challenge the existing formats. In a later stage these can readily be augmented to any level of artistic complexity. 

Some activities are simply interactive, others have a special focus (e.g. involving voice, digital technology, or an online platform).

A digital approach

The pandemic has forced us to expand the possibilities for real-time online interactions. It has also made us aware of technology’s limitations to express the intricacies and subtleties of rich human interaction. To investigate and explore these new developments (both positive and negative), our activities will focus on the concept of sensuous presence in many different forms, finding a balance between purely physical activities and the involvement of online and offline digital technology.

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