Note: To protect the privacy of our members, e-mail addresses have been removed from the archived messages. As a result, some links may be broken.

Lesson Plans


VISUAL ARTS I. D.?

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Bob Beeching (robprod)
Tue, 24 Aug 1999 17:47:51 -0700


This is a multi-part message in MIME format.

------=_NextPart_000_002B_01BEEE58.C939E560
Content-Type: text/plain;
charset="iso-8859-1"
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable

VISUAL ARTS I. D.
By what measure do we identify visual arts in the latter part of the =
20th Century; are we attempting to use mixed metaphors to describe a =
straightforward process of creating visual imagery?

Thumbing through art and educational journals, books and articles on =
art, one would think that visual arts suffered from the lack of a single =
definition and/or identification. For example, in educational jargon, =
the phrase Visual and Performing Arts is separated from the label of Art =
Education. In some circles, they seem to appear as distinct opposites.

A curious note; the phrase "art in education" is used to separate the =
visual arts from the disciplines of mathematics, and sciences. No =
distinction is held as Mathematics or Science Education - why the visual =
arts?

Backtracking through history, we find that in the late 1800s, the city =
fathers of Boston were concerned that if the arts were allowed to creep =
into the general curriculum offerings of the day, students would begin =
to develop a Bohemian life style not to be tolerated by a Puritan Ethic.

Young males of the upper class were quietly shipped off to Europe to =
further their education in the arts, leaving only girl students to =
pursue a genteel form of English watercolor tinting, embroidery, and =
piano lessons.

The male was encouraged to pursue mathematics, logic, and the sciences. =
To this day, an ecclesiastical notion of separation exists in the minds =
of many businessmen, state legislators, male school administrators, =
student counselors and faculties who still view the art as suspect, and =
tend to discourage honor students from participation.

This notion has also trickled down into parenting, where many fathers of =
male children consider the arts as "sissy stuff", and tend to ridicule =
their sons for even suggesting a vocation in the arts.

Unlike, music, dance and drama, categories in the visual arts become =
blurred to the point where "craft" is often confused with "art." =
Although all artists begin as craftspeople, not all craftspeople =
necessarily become artists.

This brings us to the 1960s and when the "flower children" movement =
discovered the crafts of "macram=E9" and "tie-dying" often confused with =
the traditional art processes of composition and design.

Where once, craftsmanship was a tradition handed down from =
mother-to-daughter, and from father-to-son, and perfected throughout a =
life time of trial and error, we now find an industry built, not around =
craft, but around cheap watered-down versions that require neither =
craftsmanship, nor previous knowledge to produce.

Because of a lack of teacher training, what has replaced visual arts in =
our public elementary schools is what many comedians often refer to as =
artsy-craftsy basket weaving courses."

More money and time has been spent on dead end projects than on any =
other curriculum offerings - that continue to place the visual arts in a =
less than amiable position on the general curriculum roster. Perhaps, =
school administrators themselves remember the visual arts as something =
one did on a rainy day, and not the dynamic discipline that it is!

Unfortunately, unless one declares a high school visual arts teaching =
major, most public school teachers escape learning much about teaching, =
drawing, painting, and construction skills. Most escape college classes =
in music, drama, and dance, leaving themselves without a basic founding =
in the visual and performing arts to share with their students.

Most Americans come away from school with the notion that the arts are =
only for the talented. This rationalization does not seem to inhibit =
their interests in pursuing sports activities? No one questions the =
necessity to learn the principles and elements of physical education. It =
is only when we rationalize our behavior in the arts that production =
techniques are thrown to the wind in favor of quickly produce visual =
gimmicks that tend to satisfy the embellishments fo social studies =
projects, and home refrigerator doors.

Every child introduced to reading, writing, and arithmetic is not =
necessarily going to become a lecturer, author, or mathematician! But =
what a child learns through these disciplines is transferable to many =
distinct and different vocational and avocational pursuits. The same =
holds true for the visual arts.

To identify the visual arts as a time-honored tradition and basis for =
non-verbal communications, would do much to clear the air, and could, in =
the next century, add credence to the proposition that human beings =
function in a world of both verbal and non-verbal literacy. One has the =
capacity to describe the other in unlike terms, but when joined =
together, often have a capacity to create a synergy that exercises a =
dynamic impact on the human psyche.=20

------=_NextPart_000_002B_01BEEE58.C939E560
Content-Type: text/html;
charset="iso-8859-1"
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">

          &nbs= p;            = ;            =     =20 VISUAL ARTS I. D.

By what measure do we identify visual arts in the latter = part of=20 the 20th Century; are we attempting to use mixed metaphors to = describe a straightforward process of creating visual imagery?

Thumbing through art and educational journals, books and articles on = art, one=20 would think that visual arts suffered from the lack of a single = definition=20 and/or identification. For example, in educational jargon, the phrase = Visual=20 and Performing Arts is separated from the label of Art = Education. In=20 some circles, they seem to appear as distinct opposites.

A curious note; the phrase "art in education" is used to separate the = visual=20 arts from the disciplines of mathematics, and sciences. No distinction = is held=20 as Mathematics or Science Education - why the visual = arts?

Backtracking through history, we find that in the late 1800s, the = city=20 fathers of Boston were concerned that if the arts were allowed to creep = into the=20 general curriculum offerings of the day, students would begin to develop = a=20 Bohemian life style not to be tolerated by a Puritan = Ethic.

Young males of the upper class were quietly shipped off to Europe to = further=20 their education in the arts, leaving only girl students to pursue a = genteel form=20 of English watercolor tinting, embroidery, and piano lessons.

The male was encouraged to pursue mathematics, logic, and the = sciences. To=20 this day, an ecclesiastical notion of separation exists in the minds of = many=20 businessmen, state legislators, male school administrators, student = counselors=20 and faculties who still view the art as suspect, and tend to discourage = honor=20 students from participation.

This notion has also trickled down into parenting, where many fathers = of male=20 children consider the arts as "sissy stuff", and tend to ridicule = their=20 sons for even suggesting a vocation in the arts.

Unlike, music, dance and drama, categories in the visual arts become = blurred=20 to the point where "craft" is often confused with "art." = Although=20 all artists begin as craftspeople, not all craftspeople necessarily = become=20 artists.

This brings us to the 1960s and when the "flower children" = movement=20 discovered the crafts of "macram=E9" and "tie-dying" often = confused=20 with the traditional art processes of composition and design.

Where once, craftsmanship was a tradition handed down from=20 mother-to-daughter, and from father-to-son, and perfected throughout a = life time=20 of trial and error, we now find an industry built, not around craft, but = around=20 cheap watered-down versions that require neither craftsmanship, nor = previous=20 knowledge to produce.

Because of a lack of teacher training, what has replaced visual arts = in our=20 public elementary schools is what many comedians often refer to as=20 artsy-craftsy basket weaving courses."

More money and time has been spent on dead end projects than on any = other=20 curriculum offerings - that continue to place the visual arts in a less = than=20 amiable position on the general curriculum roster. Perhaps, school=20 administrators themselves remember the visual arts as something one did = on a=20 rainy day, and not the dynamic discipline that it is!

Unfortunately, unless one declares a high school visual arts teaching = major,=20 most public school teachers escape learning much about teaching, = drawing,=20 painting, and construction skills. Most escape college classes in music, = drama,=20 and dance, leaving themselves without a basic founding in the visual and = performing arts to share with their students.

Most Americans come away from school with the notion that the arts = are only=20 for the talented. This rationalization does not seem to inhibit their = interests=20 in pursuing sports activities? No one questions the necessity to learn = the=20 principles and elements of physical education. It is only when we = rationalize our behavior in the arts that production techniques are = thrown to=20 the wind in favor of quickly produce visual gimmicks that tend to = satisfy the=20 embellishments fo social studies projects, and home refrigerator = doors.

Every child introduced to reading, writing, and arithmetic is not = necessarily=20 going to become a lecturer, author, or mathematician! But what a child = learns=20 through these disciplines is transferable to many distinct and different = vocational and avocational pursuits. The same holds true for the visual=20 arts.

To identify the visual arts as a time-honored tradition and basis for = non-verbal communications, would do much to clear the air, and could, in = the=20 next century, add credence to the proposition that human beings function = in a=20 world of both verbal and non-verbal literacy. One has the = capacity=20 to describe the other in unlike terms, but when joined together, = often=20 have a capacity to create a synergy that exercises a dynamic impact on = the human=20 psyche.

 

 

------=_NextPart_000_002B_01BEEE58.C939E560--