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Lesson Plans

Are we divided?

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Ken Rohrer (kenroar)
Thu, 1 Aug 1996 09:22:13 -0600

This is to let you all know that Steve Mannheimer or the dean of Herron
School of Art never returned my call and that one of his friends said that
he was dead serious about his article and that it wasn't done in jest. For
those of you who are unfamiliar with the article, see me previous post
below. Information on what to do about it are at the bottom of the

Original Post-
An article in the local newspaper has me so angry, I can't see straight. To
make matters worse, it came from an associate professor of painting, Steve
Mannheimer, at the Herron School of Art in Indianapolis. I believe that
this school should question the procedures that leads to hiring such
"distinguished" professors in their "higher" learning institutions. In
protest, I am also excercising my own free speech by deleting the link to
this art school from my site. I also plan to post an entire page on the net
to protest such outrage.

At the bottom of this message, I will include ways to contact this school
to let them know your feelings. Portions of the article are as follows:

"Early last week, IPS Superintendent Esperanza Zendejas proposed cutting at
least 125 elementary school teaching positions in art and physical
education, effective fall of 1997."

"For a moment, the art world stood stunned-sort of....Oh, the humanity.
Most of art history passed before our eyes: Everyone from Watteau to Ingres
to Turner to Schmabel, everything from rococo to chiaroscuro- it was all
slipping away."

"Now, it's unlikely that elementary students learn all that much about
Watteau and Company. Maybe the kids see a reproduction of some masterpiece
now and then. And they load buses for their annual injection of the Finer
Things in Life at one of our fine local museums."

"Face it. We're talking kids in single digits here. What do they need with
chiaroscuro? A box of crayons and some construction paper will do just
fine, thank you. And that's mostly what they get in elementary school."

".....Do we need a full-time teacher to hand out the colors and check out
the scissors? Can't we just load those buses?"

"Face it. Our children need basic English more than French and Italian art
terms. In a day when fast-food cashiers can't figure the price of a
cheeseburger and fries without a calculator, what's needed is more addition
tables, not more easels."

"Cutting art education won't condemn these kids to a life without Beauty
and Truth. At worst, it might force them into a life without brie and
museum membership."

"The affluent demographies are and always have been the seedbeds of art
patronage, such as it is around here. Who goes to museums and gallery
openings? Rich northsiders. Who buys all those Hoosier School paintings?
Rich northsiders. Who argues the lousest for increased government subsidy
of the arts?" Working-class inner-city folks? Not."

The above article appeared in the Sunday edition of the Indianapolis Star
on July 21. The address of the "higher" learning institution of which the
"distinguished" art professor is located is at the following:

Herron School of Art
1701 N. Pennsylvania
Indianapolis, IN 46202

(317) 920-2403
Robert Shay is the Dean of the school. Unfortunately they have no e-mail
address and their web site is innoperative due to an overhaul.

If you wish to write a letter of rebuttal, the address of the newspaper is:


Send your letter to the editor to both e-mail addresses as they are the
morning and evening versions of the paper. Or send it snail mail via:

Indianapolis Newspapers, Inc.
Letters to the Editor
307 N. Pennsylvania
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Fax: (317) 633-1164

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