Arts & Culture

UK Artist-Educator Rae Goodwin Receives National Award

Watch artist-educator Rae Goodwin talk with KET about her own performance and installation art inspired by grandmothers and their relationships to our lives and community.


LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 13, 2017) Rae Goodwin, associate professor and director of the Foundations Program at University of Kentucky School of Art and Visual Studies (SA/VS), is one of only two art educators across the country to receive this year's FATE (Foundations in Art: Theory and Education) Educator Award. The honor recognizes exemplary work in teaching, research and service by a college professor in a first-year art and design program.

Rob Jensen, director of UK School of Art and Visual Studies, was not surprised Goodwin had garnered national recognition for her outstanding work. "We're very proud of our Foundations Program that majors in art studio and art education take at the beginning of their careers at UK. The quality of student work has been just outstanding. Professor Goodwin was instrumental in creating this program and we think it is a model for foundations programs around the country. This honor could not be more deserved."

Goodwin was presented with the FATE Educator Award last week at a conference presented by FATE and the Kansas City Art Institute. The award included a cash prize and free registration to the organization's conference, as well as a trophy. Goodwin will also appear on an upcoming episode of FATE's monthly podcast series "Positive Space."

"I am honored to be recognized by my peers and thrilled to work with such an amazing team of faculty here in our Foundations Program in SA/VS in CFA (College of Fine Arts)," said Goodwin, who was nominated anonymously for the award by a fellow FATE member.

Rae Goodwin has worked as an artist-educator for 23 years. She began teaching in primary and secondary education in 1994 after earning a bachelor's degree from the University of Framingham. When she became frustrated with the systems of education, she started her own arts enrichment business, which she ran for nine years before working in higher education.

Goodwin's mission as an artist-educator has always been to empower individuals through creative expression. She began teaching on the college level at her alma mater, Winthrop University, where she taught as a teaching assistant and then a lecturer. She moved from the Carolinas to the hills of Kentucky in 2007 to take a full-time position at the University of Pikeville. After two years in Pikeville, she left for the horse country of Lexington and the UK School of Art and Visual Studies, where she is acting associate director and acting director of undergraduate studies, in addition to her work as director of the Foundations Program and as an art studio faculty member. 

Throughout her career, Goodwin has been unrelenting in both her pursuit of substantive change in arts education and in her drive to create art for exhibitions and performance art events. Toward substantive change in arts education, she has served on the boards of FATE and Integrative Teaching International (ITI). She has published articles in FATE in Review and FutureForward and presented at many conferences including SECAC (Southeastern College Art Conference) and CAA (College Art Association).

As current vice president of ITI, it is not surprising that Goodwin's own research into pedagogy in foundations is influenced by many of her peers, including Bell Hooks and Howard Gardner. She is focused on meaningful curricular change that takes us beyond how we were taught and toward an approach that is appropriate for today's students and the contemporary field at large.

Goodwin brings the same level of commitment to her art practice, which focuses on gender-based assumptions of freedom, intimacy and risk. Since 2003, much of her work has been about maternal ancestry and familial lineage as they influence the construction of identity. Goodwin’s work has been shown at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, McColl Center for Visual Art, Dimanche Rouge in Paris, 10/12 Gallery in Brussels, defibrillator gallery, Grace Space, Panoply Performance Laboratory, Month of Performance Art Berlin, School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Brooklyn International Performance Art Foundation. She has also worked extensively in residencies in France, Brussels and Residency Unlimited in Brooklyn, among others. Recent collaborations have seen the artist work with Casey McGuire, Mairead Delaney, Thomas Albrecht and Petra Carroll. The exchange of ideas, modes of thinking and making, and interactions are critical to Goodwin’s overall practice and demand that she take greater and very necessary risks.

A volunteer run organization, FATE has been collectively sharpening the methodologies and theories of instruction during the first years of college. The organization's reach extends throughout art and design programs in independent colleges, university departments and community colleges across the United States and Canada. Biennially, FATE hosts an expansive but immersive gathering of artists, designers, historians and educators who share in the goal of making the foundational experience in art a solid springboard for a successful academic and professional life. Additionally, FATE supports the creative arts educational community by hosting a variety of regional events across the United States, sharing discussion between educators through FATE's "Positive Space" podcast series and publishing the journal FATE in Review.

The UK School of Art and Visual Studies, at the UK College of Fine Arts, is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design and offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the fields of art studio, art history and visual studies, art education, and digital media and design.


headshot photo of Rae Goodwin
Rae Goodwin

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