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Lesson Plans


Re: Problems for DBAE

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
henry (taylorh)
Mon, 19 May 1997 10:42:44 -0700 (MST)


Robert Fromme just took on the question of problems for DBAE posed by "ltmg".
I'd like to insert my own two cents.

Robert points to 4 issues that I would agree with. Robert's problems seem
to be problems of implementation. I'll add one problem of my own in
regard to theory and practice.

DBAE, in theory concerns itself with the disciplines of Aesthetics,
Criticism, Art History, and Art Production in the contexts of Fine Art,
Popular Art, and Folk Art.

In practice, Fine Art is what ultimately defines and controls the DBAE
perspective. Aesthetics, Criticism, and Art History are academic
disciplines primarily concerned with Fine Art. If you think about it,
wherever any of these disciplines intersect popular or folk art they
translate it into the academic setting of the university, the museum, the
gallery, and the consumer.

Actually, if your institution ( in particular, your COLLEGE OF ART) has a
department of:

FOLK CRITICISM: The study of critical theory and practice IN the various
regional/local folkways and indigenous cultures; as practiced by individuals
unassociated and unfamiliar with academic perspectives.

FOLK AESTHETICS: The study of the aesthetic qualities and distinctions
valued by the various regional/local folkways and indigenous cultures; as
practiced by individuals unassociated and unfamiliar with academic
perspectives.

FOLK HISTORY OF ART: The study of the record keeping traditions and
content valued by the various regional/local folkways and indigenous
cultures; as practiced by individuals unassociated and unfamiliar with
academic perspectives.

More likely, I suspect would be the following departments; though I would
expect them to be lumped into a single department: Popular Culture.

POPULAR CRITICISM: The study of the critical theory and practice in the
popular media and culture and as practiced by individuals with no
aspirations or pretentions towards, or bias for, Fine Art.

POPULAR AESTHETICS: The study of those aesthetic qualities and distinctions
popularly valued in the context of various major, urban, pop-cultures as
practiced by individuals with no aspirations or pretentions towards, or
bias for, Fine Art.

POPULAR HISTORY OF ART: The study of historical conceptions of Art
generally held to be historical fact in the Popular Culture and by
individuals with no aspirations or pretentions towards, or bias for, Fine
Art.

So, if your institution ( in particular, your COLLEGE OF ART) has such a
department or departments please let me know!

In any case, DBAE in the field does not typically have access to such
data to share with the students. As a result the tendency seems to be to
fall back on the practices and theories of the academy OR, more
distrubingly, to keep away from pop and folk culture altogether. (except
in the more narrow context of multiculturalism)

As a result, the student is less aware of any personal connection to Pop
Culture and perspectives an less likely to participate in any accessible
Folk culture. The student's more highly held values and biases then will be
more likely to be aligned with: a) Fine Art or b) Pop and Folk Art in the
CONTEXT OF Fine Art (and therefore greatly removed from their original
contexts). ... would this represent a possible "Museum Gift Shoppe"
aesthetic? :)

I'd be interested to know if anyone else shares this perspective and in
any suggestions that might be made as to how one might deal with this
situation in the (DBAE) classroom.

-henry