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The Disobedient Art College - Collaborative Call Out

Updated: Feb 13

The Disobedient Art College

Imagine an art school with no tutors or students walking its halls, imagine there are no halls. The art college exists transient, reverberating and intangible. Nomadic installations and contactless collaborations, domestic spaces are tabletop making places and family members are both audience and critic. Drawings hang amongst school photographs and paintings are left to dry outside with the washing. Snippets or stories are written alongside shopping lists, sketchbooks are filled on lunch hours and scores are composed in dentist waiting rooms. 


Imagine a woman who at 84 decides to go to art college, she is not too old and it’s not too late. The talented artist serving a life sentence also gets to go. The photographer caring for her husband with early onset Alzheimer's, she too can attend. The blind would-be creative writer, yes there is a place for her as well. The agoraphobic painter, they can also come. Everyone is welcome at the school they’ll never set foot in.



‘Learning happens in the space in-between’

In 2016 we put a callout to the OCA community, students and staff, to share their work spaces with us, cheekily titled “Where Do You Do it?” 


You can watch the video below.




As a distance learning institution established in 1987 we have shifted over time from correspondence courses to an online pedagogy. And we know that our community is innovative when it comes to work space solutions. When the pandemic hit, lots of learning organisations had to make the move online, and with it outcries of “Online art school is not art school!” I think we can wholeheartedly disagree with that.


The thing is with us, the art school isn’t online, the art school exists in people's homes and make shift studios, it exists in notebooks alongside to do lists and between school runs and making dinner. It’s transient. It’s much more exciting, dynamic, intuitive and personal. It lives in this liminal space inside and outside the institution, which is far more radical and inclusive, it’s borderless. It’s open.


So, OCA-ers, let's celebrate our work spaces once more. We want you to send us a photo of your creative space, please include your name and course. If you’d like to be in the photo with your space that would be great too but that is entirely up to you. It would be lovely if you could complete the sentence "I chose to study with the OCA because...." as well and send everything to blog@oca.ac.uk. If you are a staff member you can tell us "I chose to work at the OCA because...". If you have any questions or concerns please email.


We will be sharing the outputs on our social media so do let us know your instagram handle if you have one and we will also create and share a compilation video similar to the 2016 version above. Please submit your spaces by 30 March 2024.

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