SIG in Arts-Based Research

 Group (SIG) throughout the conference. 

The ABR SIG events include and welcome you to: (a) attend the entire Wednesday ABR SIG Pre-Conference Symposium, (b) register for Thursday Workshops that relate to Arts-Based Research, and (c) and/or attend ICQI Friday/Saturday plenary, panel and individual paper sessions sponsored by the SIG. 

Introduction and Background 

Arts-based research is based upon the premise of utilizing various forms of artistic practice as a primary means of investigating and understanding human experience, extending to more materially sensitive, discursive, and intuitive ways of knowing. Grounded in a worldview of pluralistic ontologies and dialectic aesthetic epistemologies, ABR seeks to disrupt usual binaries such as thought and sense, mind and matter, the human and the inhuman, space and time resulting in new intersubjective and social constructions. Through provocation and contested interactions that result in startling crystallizations, permutations, and mutations, ABR invites exploration of multi-dimensional human sensory, emotional, and embodied phenomena otherwise inexpressible and out of reach through formal, academic, explanatory analysis. ABR also transcends disciplinary boundaries and is intended to therefore have applications across multiple domains and impact global socio-cultural and socio-political arenas. While the potential contributions of ABR are vast, the pragmatic issues of methodology, translation, evaluation, credibility, ethics, and, in some cases dissemination, require ongoing productive and creative discourse. 

To cultivate this trans-disciplinary discourse during the 2021 ICQI conference, the ABR SIG envisions a series of activities: 

Pre-Conference Symposium: On Wednesday, May 19, 2021 we will once again convene a full day symposium led by experts and engaging participants in addressing current issues in ABR using interactive forms of inquiry, expression, and performance. All are welcome! 

Workshops: On Thursday, May 20, 2021 there will be a series of workshops with scholars whose practice relates to or influences ABR. You will need to register for the workshops. 

Conference Panels and Individual Paper Presentations: On Friday May 21 and Saturday, May 22, 2021 more traditional panel and paper presentation sessions about diverse topics in ABR will be presented as part of the general program. Formats for sessions will include roundtables, conversation/performative pieces, and panel presentations that address troubling topics or provocations central to the development and articulation of arts-based philosophies, theories, and methods. 

Plenary Session: This year we are pleased to be presenting a plenary panel session entitled “Imagining Future Directions in Arts-Based Research” featuring esteemed ABR practitioners and authors. 

Provocations that will guide the ABR SIG program include: 

Re-visiting definitions of Arts-Based Research–How would you characterize arts-based research? What is arts-based research and what is it not? 

Constructing and characterizing worldviews implicit in arts-based research. How do we conceptualize and articulate the onto-epistemology of ABR? How do these perspectives guide the identification of ABR problems, questions, and strategies? How do socio-political contexts contribute to how we construct these worldviews, form our questions, and formulate our investigative and disseminative strategies to effect socio-political resistance and change? 

The problem and the question. What are the unaddressed research problems and social issues that might require arts-based research approaches? 

Methodological dilemma. How do we maintain the onto-epistemological integrity of the arts-based worldviews while developing systematic inquiry? 

o How do new ABR methodologies facilitate the addressing of new research questions? 

o What arts-based investigative practices have you applied to your own research? 

  1. o What is the level of arts-based skill required to conduct arts-based research? o What are some unnamed methodologies for conducting social research that can be extrapolated from your explorations as an arts-based researcher? 
  2. Advancement of knowledge. What implications might arts-based research have for yours and related fields in advancing knowledge? How might arts-based research practices from other fields influence your work? 
  3. Social justice, dissemination, and global impact. What are examples of critical-activist arts-based research outcomes serving as models of social justice and public engagement—whether rethinking global and intellectual contexts, critiquing contemporary events, problematizing norms, or contesting ideologies? 
  4. Evaluation and credibility. What are current methods for evaluating the authenticity, credibility, and aesthetic power of arts based research projects? 
  5. Ethical issues and responsibilities. As an arts-based researcher what are some of the challenges for authenticity and credibility that we face? What is our moral and ethical responsibility? 

We welcome additional topics that interested participants may want to suggest. 

    1. o Nisha Sajnani, Joe Norris, Nadia Ganesh, Kevin Hobbs, Michael Martin Metz: In the Face of the Other: Dramatic Improvisation as Collaborative Research 
    2. o Michael Viega: Remixing Adversity: Rising from the Ashes 
    3. o Charles Vanover, Michelle Rocha, Trace Taylor & Aishath Nasheeda: Arts-Based Research from Storytelling 
    4. o Dafna Moriya: Exploring the Lived Experience of the Present time with Both Individual and Collaborative Artistic Expression as a Case Example for Arts-Based Research 
    5. o Kimberly Powell: Walking as Sensory Inquiry 



Wednesday 9:00-4:00 

Preconference Symposium: Conversations and Constructions the Politics of Resistance A full day interactive symposium led by ABR experts while engaging participants in addressing current issues in ABR inquiry, expression, and performance with implications for addressing the conference topic of research as political resistance. Although there is no fee to take part in the symposium, all participants must register for the ICQI conference. 


9:00-9:15 Welcome 

9:15-10:15 Points of Provocation 

Senior scholars in ABR will each introduce a methodological point of debate within ABR. Each presentation will not exceed 7 minutes. Presentations may be delivered linguistically or performed. Following all presentations, there will be brief discussion on how we will work together to build on these themes throughout the day. 


10:30-12:15 Provocation Workshops The workshop portion will include small group breakout groups each with an assigned provocation and senior scholar facilitator. Each group will include dialogues and arts-based processes to address philosophical, theoretical, and practical aspects of ABR related to their topic and related issues. These dialogues are inclusive of the multi-disciplinary and socially engaged nature of ABR and how different disciplines may create tensions as to how ABR might or might not be conceptualized, practiced, and defined. As the conversation emerges, these ABR discussions will debate what might constitute a coherent response to the provocation. Each group will synthesize the arts-based, textual and theoretical conclusions from their discussion for 

a presentation/performance to the entire group in the afternoon session. The afternoon presentational formats can also explore distinctly ABR modes of opportunities for audience engagement and feedback. 

12:15-1:14 Lunch 

1:30-3:15 Afternoon Presentations 

Groups will present the results of their morning provocation driven discussions and arts-based inquiries. 



Entire group reconvenes to review and summarize the learning from the day. A final discussion will summarize the day’s activities and will identify emergent responses, questions, and phenomena central to continued investigation in ABR. 


The Thursday Workshop highlights the work of multiple presenters whose work is based-on or influential to Arts-Based Research. Please see the workshop 

Analyzing Images in Visual Research 

Kerry Freedman and Richard Siegesmund 

Teaching and Learning Qualitative Research Methods Principles Through Popular Film Clips 

Johnny Saldaña 

Methodological Practices for the Moving Body 

Pirkko Markula and Jim Denison 

Composing Bodies: Performative Autoethnography as Qualitative Research 

Tami Spry 

Songwriting as an Arts-Based Research Methodology 

J. Chris Haddox 


MAY 21-22,2021 

ICQI Conference Sessions The ABR SIG includes three kinds of sessions during the main conference. ICQI conference registration is required to present and attend main conference sessions. 

Individual Paper Session Presentations Accepted individual papers will be placed in panel sessions. The program committee will form Sessions. Sessions normally consist of 4 papers. 

● Focused Panel Session Presentations 

Special Plenary Session: Imagining Future Directions in Arts-Based Research 


We encourage unconventional, interactive and engaging forms of communication and audience involvement in which presenters show rather than read their observation or results, leading the audience to think with their presenters. 

Conference/SIG organizers:

Nancy Gerber, Ph.D., ATR-BC

Richard Siegesmund, Ph.D. 

Brooke Hofsess, Ph.D.