Summer Institute:Text and Context

Tuesday, June 27, 2017, 10 am to 3 pm

$400; Registration required

Presented by The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum and Fairfield University

Date: June 27 to 30, 2017
Time: 10 am to 3 pm daily

Jeff Hopkins, Teaching Artist, The Guggenheim Museum
Carol Ann Davis, Associate Professor, English, Fairfield University
Sonya Huber, Associate Professor, English, Fairfield University
Jo Yarrington, Professor, Visual and Performing Arts, Fairfield University

With contemporary art as core content, discover innovative strategies for integrating the arts across disciplines in this four-day institute led by Guggenheim Museum Teaching Artist, Jeff Hopkins, and Fairfield University faculty from the English and Fine Arts Departments. Participating educators will investigate the exhibitions on view at The Aldrich and session leaders will draw from the ideas posed by the artists, exploring the text-based work in the galleries and leading activities and conversations that question our role as both introspective observer of, and critical commentator about, society and ourselves. The program will draw connections between creativity and learning, and strengthen visual literacy skills and inquiry based teaching methods. Educators will have the opportunity to rejuvenate and recharge their imaginations through a range of participatory art-making and writing activities.

What to Expect:
Each day, participants will engage in an on-going mixed-media project with an Aldrich teaching artist, laying the foundation for arts integration. This will be complemented by exhibition-inspired sessions led by Fairfield University faculty who specialize in cross-cultural and social justice studies, poetry, and creative non-fiction. Additionally, participants will engage with regional experts in the arts, who will showcase best practices in museum teaching pedagogy. Throughout this innovative program, there will be the opportunity to connect with colleagues across grade levels and disciplines.

For more information please contact Danielle Ogden, Associate Director, Academic Programs at


10:00 ‒ 11:00 am Welcome remarks and tour with exhibitions director, Richard Klein
11:00 – 11:45 am Opening exercise
12:00 – 1:00 pm Lunch / Mindfulness Drawing
1:00 ‒ 3:00 pm Workshop with Fairfield University faculty, Jo Yarrington

10:00 am ‒ 12 noon Workshop with Fairfield University faculty, Sonya Huber
12:00 ‒ 1:00 pm Lunch and writing/sketching at Keeler Tavern
1:00 ‒ 3:00 pm Workshop with Jeff Hopkins/curriculum development

10:00 am ‒ 12 noon Workshop with Fairfield University faculty, Carol Ann Davis
12 noon ‒ 1:00 pm Lunch with curator, Amy Smith-Stewart and exhibiting artist, Tony Matelli
1:30 ‒ 3:00 pm Workshop with Jeff Hopkins
3:00pm – 4:00pm Yoga and Art

10 am ‒ 12 noon Workshop with Jeff Hopkins
12 noon – 1 pm Lunch
1:00 – 2:00 pm Curriculum review and reflection
2:00 – 3:00 pm Culmination/showcase

About the Teaching Faculty:

Jeff Hopkins is a storyteller, educator, and children’s book illustrator. He holds a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and a Masters in Education from Harvard University. Jeff has performed his drawing/storytelling shows at arts institutions all over the country including The Barnes Foundation (Philadelphia), The Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), The Delaware Art Museum, Museum of Arts and Design (NY), Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (Arkansas) and the Institute of Contemporary Art (Boston). For the past 15 years, Jeff has been a teaching artist for arts organizations including the Guggenheim Museum, American Ballet Theatre, The Jewish Museum, ArtsConnection the Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum. He has also taught at New York University and Tufts University, and currently teaches Art Education at The City College of New York.

Sonya Huber is an associate professor of creative writing at Fairfield University. She is the author of two books of creative nonfiction, Cover Me: A Health Insurance Memoir (2010), finalist for the ForeWord Book of the Year, and Opa Nobody (2008), shortlisted for the Saroyan Prize. She has also written a textbook, The Backwards Research Guide for Writers: Using Your Life for Reflection, Connection, and Inspiration (2011), and an e-book, Two Eyes are Never Enough, available through SheBooks. Her work has been published in The New York Times, Creative Nonfiction, Brevity, Fourth Genre, Crab Orchard Review, Hotel Amerika, The Chronicle of Higher Education, the Washington Post Magazine, and other outlets. She received the 2013 Creative Nonfiction Award from Terrain and her work appears in True Stories, Well Told: From the First 20 Years of Creative Nonfiction.

Carol Ann Davis is the author of Psalm and Atlas Hour, both from Tupelo Press. The recipient of a National Endowment of the Arts Fellowship in Poetry and the W. K. Rose Fellowship for the Creative Arts from Vassar College, her work has appeared in Agni, American Poetry Review, Volt, The Threepenny Review, and on the ArtBeat website for PBS’ Newshour. Her essay, “The One I Get and Other Artifacts,“originally published in The Georgia Review, was one of five finalists for the 2015 National Magazine Award in the Essays and Criticism Category. Carol Ann Davis served as editor of Crazyhorse from 2001-2012. She is Associate Professor of English at Fairfield University and Editor of Dogwood: A Journal of Poetry and Prose.

Jo Yarrington’s drawings, photographs, and architecturally-based installations have been shown in exhibitions at AldrichContemporary Art Museum, CT, Yale University, the BRIC Rotunda Gallery, Museum of Glass, WA, Chashama/ Sited at the Donnell 20 W. 53rd, NY, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco, CA, Trinity Museum, NY, DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park, MA, Artists Space, NY, Grounds for Sculpture, NJ, and William Benton Museum of Art, CT. International exhibitions have included Galeria Sala Uno, Italy, Centro de las Artes de Guanajuato, Mexico, Christuskirche, Germany, Glasgow School of Art, Scotland. She is a recipient of fellowships from the Pollock Krasner Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Joan Mitchell Foundation, Cill Rialaig Artists Residency/Ireland, the MacDowell Colony, SIMS/ Iceland, Ucross Residency/Wyoming, the American Scandinavian Foundation, the Brandywine Institute, the Pennsylvania Council for the Arts and the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism. In 2001, she represented the United States at the Sharjah Biennial, United Arab Emirates and in 2010 she won the Bronze Prize at the International Biennal Exhibition of Photographic Art, Museum of Contemporary Art in Skopje, Macedonia and in 2012 she was represented in the Berlin Biennial . She is a Professor of Studio Art in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts at Fairfield University in Fairfield, CT. Her professional affiliations are CAA and the PNSNE. She lives and works in New York City and Norwalk, CT.