Anyone Anything Anytime Anywhere Anyhow

Duchamp removed the frame from around the canvas and placed it around the world to say that life is art. We removed the walls from around the classroom to say that life is learning.


During the second year of the MFA Critical Studies Program at CalArts, graduate students are offered an opportunity to teach writing courses to BFA students.  To me, there wasn't a point in waiting around to start teaching.  Education is a lifelong process, meant to spring from an intrinsic motivation within a given person.  And, while some experts may be able to impart the wisdom of their experience in an institutional setting, the elaborate heirarchy of the school system in the United States prevents perfectly knowledgeable people from teaching without a credential and any learning that takes place outside of an institution's walls from being seen as legitimate.

I started "anyone anything anytime anywhere anyhow" as a way for people with knowledge to provide it to people seeking said knowledge.  I enlisted the help of my fellow MFA-1 students to teach classes on things they knew about.  I encouraged them to try unique pedagogical methods.  And the classes would be held in fun and accessible places during times when the most number of students could meet.  This grassroots method of educating yielded on woman who wanted to teach a class on psychonautics, held in an elevator at some point in the middle of the night.  Other classes, as expected from creative writing students, included "Poetry in the Victorian Era" - held at Chili's, "Prog Rock", and, my own class, "Reality, 'Reality', and the works of Philip K. Dick".

The classes soon faded as the graduate work began to pile up, but I've still got ideas in the works. I would like to start a certificate program which legitimates any sort of on-the-job training that a worker in any field receives, but receives no documentation for.  So, for instance, an office worker that has been faxing, copying, and collating for years without validation or a janitor that's been cleaning out classrooms without recognition can receive a certificate stating all of his or her skills.  I'd also like to distribute Lifetime Achievement Awards for anyone that wants want that demonstrate ## years of experience of being alive. The distribution of these awards would, of course, take place during a huge graduation ceremony in which we celebrate the lives of all of the recepients.