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Re:[teacherartexchange] New thread: tech in art


From: Jerry Vilenski (jvilenski_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Wed Aug 02 2006 - 08:55:54 PDT

I am of the opinion that, although technology has
dominated many aspects of our lives in the last 20
years or so, that same technology in art should play a
significant role, but should not replace hands-on art
production. Technology has always been an integral
part of art in many ways. Oil paints in a tube was a
technological step forward which freed the Van Gohs of
the world to paint in the outdoors instead of the
studio. Acrylic paints were a technological
breakthrough that spawned a whole new generation of
contemporary artists. Photography changed the way we
look at the world, both in art and in popular culture.
Computers are another great tool to explore art,
because they allow the swift manipulation of images,
encourage experimentation and increase creative
problem solving experiences.

I use technology in my classroom in ways that I feel
don't take over traditional art methods and
techniques. For instance, I use a video document
camera to give demonstrations, one that allows me to
zoom in, record, freeze frames and save me gathering
kids around a demonstration table. I use computers to
generate perspective lessons, isolate images for
projects, scan kid's artwork, make virtual art shows
and generate posters and other instructional aids. I
do not, however, use computers to supplant the old,
hands in the clay, paint up to the elbows experience
of art. That type of art should never, in my opinion,
be totally replaced with any form of technology. Don't
get me wrong; I am a true computer geek. I am totally
fascinated with manipulating images and inventing new
ones on a computer. I am able to use digital imaging
to make my own webpage, communicate with other artists
on this listserve and do art related research. But I
still am a practicing watercolorist that respects the
skills and creativity entailed in making something
with my own hands, and that is the essence of art.

Vigilance, Jerry

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