Dr. Jason White adds to his already lengthy publication list with new book
By Elizabeth Fitzgerald, Guest Writer
Xavier Department of Art Assistant Professor Dr. Jason White has released his first book, titled Innovation in the Arts: Concepts, Theories, and Practices.
White is also the coordinator of the arts administration minor in the same department. He is already an accomplished writer, having published articles, journals and an award-winning play.
“I’ve been involved and have had the privilege and the pleasure of being involved in the arts… all my life,” White said.
White’s interest in arts innovation began in 2013 when he was working on his doctorate at Ohio State University.
For a large part of his time there, White’s research was focused on arts entrepreneurship. His thoughts began to shift towards innovation in this field, but he says nobody was talking about innovation.
He didn’t officially start writing his book until Summer 2021.
“I spent pretty much all summer knocking this out, but it was easy by then, because I’d had six years to think about it,” White noted.
Even with the amount of time he had spent contemplating his book’s concepts, White was still challenged in many ways when writing it. He realized that there were no books prior to his that bridged gaps between innovation, entrepreneurship, art and art history literature.
“Nobody had come up with a formal theory that rationalized the concept,” White said.
He covers three theories of art innovation in his book. He also includes a chapter of key definitions from the disciplines from which he pulls information in order to make his theories easy for anyone to understand.
“We need to be able to have a conversation and understand each other if we’re going to make meaning from the work,” he added.
He asserted that this book is great for many different audiences, including artists, students and scholars.
“You can read this book and come away with a great understanding of what innovation in the arts is and isn’t,” White said.
“Overall, I think it will enhance anybody’s creative practice, because what artist doesn’t want their work to lead to innovation?”
At times, White described writing his book as an emotional roller coaster. Through his process, he drew support from many people.
“My lovely wife probably knows more about this topic than anyone on Earth,” he said affectionately.
White also worked with colleagues from many departments, as his book covers many different disciplines. He also garnered feedback from art institutions that previewed his work.
“I would have never gotten there without the support of my friends, my wife and colleagues,” he said.
“I think for many years, it’s going to be considered an essential part of the curriculum for arts, entrepreneurship, for arts administration and for a diversity of artistic practices as well,” he continued.
White is content to turn his main focus to teaching at Xavier for the time being. He also hopes to recruit more students to the new art administration minor that he coordinates.
“We have a wonderful program that does a couple of unique things that nobody else does. They are going to make the difference and get people a leg up in the job market,” White added.
While he enjoyed writing his book, he asserted that he is still “kind of recovering from the emotion of it all.”
Now, White hopes to relax and enjoy his book’s great success for the time being but adds that he would love to work on more literature in the future.
White’s book was published by Routledge in their Global Creative Economy series. It is available in many stores and online through Amazon and Routledge.