I attended TICA a couple of summers ago. I took the Visual Culture class
and the speakers were top drawer. We had guest speakers for four hours in
the morning and I could have stayed with this focus all day. We stayed in
beautiful new dorm rooms in the hart of the loop. We were fed well if not
elegantly. I really, really loved meeting other wonderful, bright art
teachers from all over the country!
A studio component was added (apparently to placate folks who were enrolled
in their "second choice") that was frustrating because our teacher was a
(I'm not going to say this word on the list but it is short for Richard).
He was young, pompous, full of himself, and he addressed our august group
as if we were art morons (invitations to TICA are highly selective or so
they wouild have you believe). "Wow! you guys are better than my grad
students" or "introducing" us to the works of Serra or Smithson (ask if we
had been living under a rock).
After hearing lectures about the city's architecture from a fascinating and
erudite professor, and being a native, on the fourth day I led a small
group "refugees" on an architecture trip to see Frank Lloyd Wright's home
and studio and the Chihuly exhibit at Garfield Park Conservatory. The next
day we took the Architecture Society's river trip throught the city. By the
end of the week only three teachers attended to studio session.
I know they understood that this component was a failure, and I know they
will not repeat it. I felt bad about not being wholely supportive because
it was an honor to be selected and I wanted to play by the rules. One of
those tacit understandings would be that I should only communicate the best
parts of the experience...grants fund this afterall.
Would I do it again? I've been asked to come back as a mentor, but I really
don't feel like I deserve it. Did I learn a lot? Yes, I did, but I could
have learned more..