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[teacherartexchange] nudity in art

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kalexy_at_TeacherArtExchange
Date: Sat Dec 15 2007 - 22:20:44 PST


In regards to Patty's statement regarding nudes in art:
"I'm not trying to be flippant, but I have serious considerations
about art teachers without comprehensive art history background
presenting nude images with only some textbook notation as backup."

Personally, I do not think one necessarily needs to have a comprehensive
background to explain the sheer beauty of the human form. I truly comprehend on a deep level that we are created by thee most amazing creator/artist and find great joy in discussing the human form on many levels in my art classes, BUT not everybody agrees with me unfortunately. This is indeed a time of strange standards we live in but in my 20 years of teaching and making art, I have made a decision to edit what I show and say in SOME of my classes due to parents, staff, school boards, etc. that do not seem to share my enthusiasm.
Where do you teach? Do you teach at a public elementary school? I, too, love Manet's "Olympia" and would not dream of teaching this as a "voyeur." I am curious why you seem to think many teachers teach as if they are voyeurs. I have never once encountered this type of approach with any professional on any level. Maybe you have.

Yes, it is a shame we cannot freely show great works of art that have nudes in them, as I actually think children can handle it....it's just the adults that seem to have a problem.
 Some of my fondest memories as a child were going to the Getty in Malibu, CA with my mother and looking at the nude marble statues with awe and great joy.... and my mother letting me slap their cold bottoms (she did not have a comprehensive art history background, needless to say.)
- K. Alexy
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