Coaching and Mentoring Students

Changing the world through participatory aesthetics

The Scarlet Cord

November 14, 2017 - Saugatuck High School of Saugatuck, Michigan

Sex trafficking exhibit created by Saugatuck High School students

Students from Saugatuck High School created their own sex-trafficking installation

Artist Statement

Students from Colorado and southern California asked for coaching with their sex-trafficking projects. I also worked with students from Saugatuck High School via email, text messaging, Skype, and a visit to my garage studio. Because of generous donations from art supporters, I gave the Saugatuck students most of the supplies needed to develop their own sex-trafficking installation.

Saugatuck High School students working with Pamela on sex trafficking awareness exhibit Saugatuck High School students working with Pamela on sex trafficking awareness exhibit Saugatuck High School students working with Pamela on sex trafficking awareness exhibit

Pamela working with students in her garage studio

Pamela has a heart for working with students and expanding their creative vision. She donated supplies and helped our students create a sex-trafficking exhibit. With Pamela's input, the students learned how to continue the dialogue for those who are held in sexual bondage—through art. The project expanded students' social awareness and challenged them to find their own voice for the victims of human trafficking.

Melissa Goodell
Saugatuck High School
Saugatuck, Michigan

World Hunger Exhibit

January through April, 2017 – Grand Rapids Public Museum School

If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one. Mother Teresa

Artist Statement

Healing in Arts is about learning to serve individuals and communities through relational aesthetics. Throughout the Spring, 2017, twelve-week course, I helped guide Grand Rapids Public Museum School students through the art-making process by creating an ArtPrize mock-up exhibit. Students chose the topic, gathered supplies, created the work, and collected donations to benefit local children experiencing hunger.

Our class discussions included world hunger in places like Asia, Africa, and North America. Several weeks into the class one student's comment made me smile: “Wow, artists have to work really hard.” Yes, it is very challenging to create meaningful work that will touch hearts and offer hope and healing to those in need. But, throughout the participatory process, students learned important lessons on how art can be a powerful tool to promote positive outcomes. Artists can even be culture-changers and influence the world—one person at a time.

Students create World Hunger exhibit

Students create World Hunger exhibit

Students create posters and collected donations for “Kids Food Basket” to benefit hungry children in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Students created posters and collected donations for “Kids Food Basket” to benefit hungry children in Grand Rapids, Michigan

See video highlights…

The Public Museum School's Lyceum program supports the integration of academic learning and student-directed meaningful experiences. Lyceum students had the privilege of walking through the steps of art making with ArtPrize artist Pamela Alderman. The middle school students collected household items to create a mock-up exhibit on world hunger and helped shoot a short video documenting the learning process. Alderman's creative talent and passion inspired students to serve others through interactive healing art. Her Lyceum class was a powerful learning experience for students who participated.

Christopher Hanks
Principal, Grand Rapids Public Museum School
Grand Rapids Public Schools