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My dream


From: Patricia Knott (pknott_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Fri Jul 06 2001 - 13:00:31 PDT

I went into my room at school today. Everything was out of the room for
cleaning --- and I thought Oh how I like an empty space, an empty canvas.
It looks so big without all the tables and chairs.
And my fantasy was recalled.
A room with no tables and chairs. A room to be sculpted and transformed. A
comfortable room. No seating charts, no seats! (except for the odd chairs I
collect ) A room that is formed by it's inhabitants - just like my studio.

I need to have in my studio, space that can transform - areas for this and
that as needed. I need to have a good sound system for the music I love, a
space for all my resources, and plenty of space that can be moved and shoved
and rearranged according to my current needs.

Last year I was forced to get rid of all my "junk" at school. It killed me
this year, not having my junk boxes to go to for creative play ideas. All I
had was all that stuff from catalogues. The stuff that costs big monies.
When only the "proper" supplies are available I find that an independent
search for art is inhibited. I hate the idea of students using supplies and
wanting instruction in the proper use of those supplies. And conserving and
being wary of misuse because those supplies are costly. When every one is
given the same supply and the same instruction - what is the result?

I think part of the history of art is the artist being inspired by material
and tools, and the selection of such is part of the art making. I want the
art room to be a shopping place for art supplies. Can you still paint
without brush ? draw without a pencil?
Those of you that have such limited money for supplies? How do you convey,
that over the centuries, art has been made with what is found? Can we
challenge are students to be art explorers, detectives, to make tool and
material discoveries, to be daring? To not take traditional art materials
for granted?

Who among us does not know that small children are more fascinated by pots
and pans than sophisticated toys? Who doesn't know that kids are constantly
on the lookout for objects with possibilities? Observe what children save
that we may discard.

I don't want my room to be neat and functional. I don't want to select
specific supplies for my specific lesson; especially when it's rooted in my
determination of my own experience with that supply.

Think back to
"show and tell"
When you where asked to bring something to share with the class. I think
each example was unpredictable. Something important that inspired fantasy
and encounter. I think we need to pay attention to how each individual
saves and stores and relishes objects. Isn't that what makes an artist?
Children take special care of their collections. Children have their own
criteria for finding the the potential of , the feel of, the possibilities
of an object. I think looking for "stuff" is a full time activity for
children. They want to see all the possibilities.
New art can be found in the most limited of financial possibilities.

My dream --- for my art room
It's so free and open and lacking in standards and objectives...
just what artists have always been about