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

re: A world without art / visual literacy

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Doug DuBosque (dd)
Mon, 1 Jun 1998 11:37:54 -0400 (EDT)

I'd get the CEO to acknowledge - even volunteer - that we live in an
increasingly visual world. The "information age" is not just numbers;
visual presentation makes information intelligible.

People who present information visually control how information is
perceived, remembered, and responded to: whether it's TV, video games,
hospital lobbies, snowboards, car headlights, sales presentations, your
flower garden, the chair you're sitting in, or the diagram you draw on a
paper napkin to present an idea - because you "CAN" draw. Visually educated
people can present information a whole lot better. They are, in effect, the

More powerful than imagining a world without art (who can?) is imagining an
increasingly visual world where the visual literates are the leaders,
because they know how to look, how to see, how to present...just as those
who can read have an immeasurable advantage over those who can't.

Either our schools produce leaders, or we produce followers. Either we're
produce literates - including visual literates, or we don't.

Visual literacy doesn't just "happen," any more than literacy just
"happens." To produce literates, we need a reading program. To produce
visual literates, we need a visual education program.


Does "visual education" preclude sculpture, clay, etc? Not at all. I
believe "visual education," however, and not "art," is the most powerful
"foot in the door." Art is wonderfully flexible: it's up to us to take
advantage of that flexibility to present it in the strongest light. Some
CEOs love "The Arts." Some (and more than a few school boards) think "The
Arts" means crucifixes in jars of urine, something out of Leviticus. Judge
not...just present your strongest argument, with conviction. And remember
that most of the time, you're talking to visual illiterates...tread gently,
with respect. Help them see; no one else has taught them.

Doug DuBosque
Draw Cars, Draw Ocean Animals, etc etc