CCI Research

CCI’s work has been extensively researched and documented in various ways. Many of these are available here to read online or download for free. Some are produced in limited print runs and can be purchased via the CCI shop.

CCI's own publications and resources:

Outside/Inside A gallery of provocations and speculations

Offered as a gallery of paired images of outside experiences with inside explorations, this new CCI resource sets out to ‘excite and stimulate’ thinking about outdoor learning and how to connect it to the classroom.

A Story of Smallness and Light: discovering detail in the woods

Our second in the series of booklets exploring an aspect of a Footprints project in detail – this time focusing on a particular fascination with smallness and light that emerged amongst some of the reception class exploring Bramblefields Nature Reserve in Cambridge during summer 2012.

37 Shadows: listening to children’s stories from the woods

A full-colour 40 page collection of stories and illustrations from our Histon Footprints project documenting how children can find their voices in wild places, becoming authors, Illustrators, questioners, and thinkers.  A commentary from creative practitioner Deb Wilenski explores what we mean by ‘listening’ to children, and encourages a practice of looking for the big ideas driving children’s outdoor play and exploration. Published 2012.

A Trail of Imagination and Curiosity

Commissioned by Friends of Mill Road Cemetery (Cambridge) as a way for families to explore this wild city space, our playful, interactive booklet created by CCI practitioners Filipa Pereira-Stubbs and Deb Wilenski invites families to explore the cemetery through imagination, curiosity and a willingness to wander. A Trail of Imagination and Curiosity is available free via the cemetery website to support all future visitors. Published 2010.

An A – Z for Trumpington

A richly illustrated book offering an account of the creative consultation programme undertaken by CCI with Trumpington residents in Spring 2010. Drawing together the ideas, images and stories explored in workshops with children, families, older residents and local youth groups, the book celebrates the creative potential of the community.

A Story of Smallness and Light: discovering details in the woods

Documenting children’s fascinations with the tiny detail of the woods and the qualities of light, in Brambleifelds Nature Reserve, this 40 page full colour illustrated booklet is the second in a series with 37 Shadows: Listening to children’s stories from the woods. Published 2014.

Cambridgeshire Footprints: 2012 Evaluation

Cambridgeshire Early Years Service commissioned Cambridge Curiosity and Imagination to work with children, staff and parents from Kidzone, a nursery in Whittlesey, and Shirley Primary School, Cambridge, throughout the summer term of 2012. This evaluation report documents the core values, developing practice and transformational learning for both children and adults.

Can you stay and make tomorrow never come?

A report on the distinctive qualities of Creative Practitioners involved in Talk About Tomorrow – a Creative Partnerships Tendring Project - by Ruth Sapsed, 2007.

Children Take the Lead: an evaluation

An independent evaluation by Joanna Holland of the Children take the lead research programme run with Wysing Arts Centre, Kettle's Yard Gallery and local schools and families during 2011-12. Published 2012.

Enemies of Boredom

The evaluation report of the Hundred Languages of Children exhibition and programme of events, Cambridge, in summer 2004, by Dr Mandy Swann. A full-colour illustrated 36 page booklet that offers insights and reflections from feedback from over 2,000 people who attended the exhibition.

Igniting a Fuse: developing the creative practice of primary educators

A fully illustrated 64 page book offering an account of the learning journeys undertaken by a group of educators on Creativity as Practice. Written by Mandy Maddock and Ruth Sapsed with a foreword by Mary Jane Drummond. Published by Creative Partnerships, 2008.

Ways into Hinchingbrooke Country Park ; a fantastical guide for the wildly curious

Our first guide in this series is written by creative practitioners Deb Wilenski and Caroline Wendling with a foreword by Robert Macfarlane.  It draws on the materials gathered through the Hinchingbrooke project – photographs, stories, creative work in different media – to create a resource that is both provocative and beautiful, sharing children’s experiences and interpretations of the park with its future visitors. Published 2013.

Research published in academic and professional journals on CCI's work:

Enabling the ‘Other Community’ through Creative Pedagogies for Urban Renewal: Exploring the Affiliation Between Contemporary Art Practices and Democratic Values

This paper by Dr Esther Sayers about CCI’s ArtScaper programme was published in the Journal of Cultural Research in Art Education, September 2018.

I explore the idea that community engagement is not simply about learning as an instrument to produce a person who is ready for active citizenship within a democracy, but rather to enable newly configured communities where an individual’s uniqueness is savoured. 

Supporting children’s well-being with art in nature: artist pedagogue perceptions

This study of CCI artists working with children in schools on nature - based activities  by Dr Nicola Walshe(Anglia Ruskin University) and  Dr Elsa Lee (University of Cambridge) suggests important outcomes for mental wellbeing.Recent evidence from this research was presented in the form of this poster at the European Educational Research Association Annual Conference in Copenhagen in August 2017, presented with Millie Smith (Anglia Ruskin University). The evidence was also logged as part of the data collection for the House of Commons Debate: Effect of the arts on health in October 2017.

What happens to opportunities for learning when some of the structures of schooling are remodelled? What do children and young people do with these new opportunities? Drawing on research into creative projects in a primary and secondary school, and an after-school club for looked-after children, this paper examines a different way of working in schools, from the perspective of the creative practitioners who designed and led the projects in partnership with teachers and resource centre workers. Education 3-13, Vol. 35, No. 1, February 2007, pp 47-58.

Let’s Play

An article about the role of play in CCI's practice by Artist Idit Nathan. Published in Engage 16, Winter 2006, the journal by the leading international association for gallery educators, artist educators and other arts and education professionals.

Tyler Denmead  is Assistant Professor of Art Education in the School of Art and Design at the University of Illinois.  He is the Director of the Saturday Art School, and the founder and former Executive Director of New Urban Arts.  His doctoral studies at the University of Cambridge (2011) focused on the pedagogies of CCI artists. Findings from this research have been published in a number of peer-reviewed journals:

Viscerality and Slowliness: An Anatomy of Artists' Pedagogies of Material and Time

(with Richard Hickman, University of Cambridge)

International Journal of Education and the Arts, Volume 13, Number 9, December 19, 2012

Being and becoming: Elements of pedagogies described by three East Anglian creative practitioners

Thinking Skills and Creativity 
Volume 6, Issue 1, April 2011, Pages 57-66 (Permission has been granted from Elsevier for CCI to publish this article via its website)

Meeting and extending participants: exploratory case studies of community artist pedagogy 

Journal of Arts and Communities 
Volume 1, Number 3, July 2011 , pp. 235-246(12)

A summary of the article published in Thinking Skills and Creativity is featured on the Creativity, Culture and Education (CCE) website, which can be accessed here. Journal articles may also be purchased or accessed through institutional subscriptions.

Prior to his postgraduate work, he was the founder and director of New Urban Arts, a nationally-recognised interdisciplinary studio for artist mentors and secondary school students in the United States. 

Refocus Journal Articles include:

Adventuring in a Cambridge forest

An account of an original Footprints project with Colleges Nursery (north Cambridge) with CCI artist Filipa Pereira-Stubbs.  2008.

Standing back to watch the ripples spread

A reflective account by early years educators Andrea Gray and Jane Stewart, participants on a 2009 Creativity as Practice Course, run with Pam Burnard, University of Cambridge Faculty of Education and Brent Early Years Team. 2009.

There are also a number of films documenting our projects including:

Trolley of Ideas

Time to C to B


Deakin Learning Centre Creative Consultation

Talking Cities

Playful Hands


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