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[teacherartexchange] Why Teach Art? - Article by Tina Farrel

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From: Judy Decker (judy.decker_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Fri Oct 07 2005 - 06:33:35 PDT


Greetings Art Educators,

Nicole Brisco posted this article to AP list. I know that is is OK to
post it here.
Tina Farrell wrote this for the Texas Art Education Association several
years ago.

Why Teach Art

ART IS A SCIENCE
In many cases creating art demands exact, specific mixtures as a variety
of compounds such as: silica, wax, oil, and pigment. Artists develop
hypotheses on the result of these combinations and how they will effect
their art. This experimentation is done with note taking in a journal to
record successful and sometimes not so successful results. Artists look
for absorption rates, appropriate catalysts, dissociation points, and
causes of devitrification. Artists are keen observers and recorders of
their environment just as a scientist is.
Artists are scientists.

ART IS MATHEMATICAL
Artists translate a complex three-dimensional world in to two-dimensional
and three-dimensional images and sculptures. This requires a keen
understanding of spatial relationships, linear perspective, technical
shading of form, symmetry and asymmetry, and a knowledge of geometrical
and organic shapes. Many works of art require the artist to develop exact
measurements of size and weight.
Artists are mathematicians.

ART IS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE
Many of the terms commonly used in art originate from a variety of
languages like: Italian, German, Latin, and French. Words such as:
applique, Bas Relief, tromp-l'oeil, chiaroscuro, monochrome, gouache, and
sgraffito. Vocabulary in art is a blend of many cultures and therefore
becomes its own unique language.
Artists speak a foreign language.

ART IS HISTORY
Art reflects the environment, culture, and often the political conditions
of the time and place in which it was created. The artworks of the world
are mankind's greatest records of his history on planet earth. The cave
paintings of France, the pyramids of Giza, the urns of Greece, the
sculptures of Michelangelo, the masks of the Native Americans, the
narrative paintings of the 19th century, and the characters of Grant Wood,
have all remained as a record of communication of times gone by. History
is simply not history without the artifacts that support its existence.
Artists record history.

ART IS LANGUAGE ARTS
Art is a higher form of communication. As artists translate the world
around them, stories of bravery, heroism, valor, sorrow, and hope emerge
into narratives of imagery, characters, and settings. Artists research,
brainstorm, rough draft, create preliminary drawings, keep journals, date
title, and sign their works, and create works based upon a theme or
series. Artists have made images inspired by poems, music, stories, and
events.
Artists are communicators.

ART IS PHYSICAL EDUCATION
Art requires fantastic coordination of the fingers, hands, arms, and body.
The hand and the eye must work in perfect harmony in order to create.
Many forms of art require great physical strength, balance, and
coordination such as sculpting large structures from stone, metal, and
wood, and throwing hundreds of pounds of clay. Painting, drawing, and
sculpting require great physical stamina.
Artists are fit for life.

ART IS TECHNOLOGY
Great works of art are now created on computers requiring artists to have
highly developed computer skills and knowledge. Graphic arts and
communication professions have changed dramatically with the use of this
tool.
Artists are visionaries.

ART IS ALL OF THESE THINGS, BUT MOST OF ALL, ART IS ART
It allows a human being to take all of these dry, technical, and difficult
techniques and use them to create intense beauty, and powerful emotional
response. This is one thing that science cannot duplicate, mathematics
cannot calculate, foreign language cannot translate, history cannot
legislate, and physical education cannot replicate.

THAT IS WHY WE TEACH ART!
Not because we expect you to major in Art.
Not because we expect you to create art all of your life.
Not so you can relax or just have a hobby.

WE TEACH ART
So you will be human.
So you will recognize and appreciate true beauty.
So you can communicate from the very depths of your soul.
So you will be sensitive to life and the peoples within it.
So you will be closer to an infinite beyond this world.
So you will have more love, more compassion, more gentleness´┐Ż
more life.

By Tina Farrell
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I will contact Tina for permission to put this on Incredible Art Department.

Judy Decker
Incredible Art Department
http://www.princetonol.com/groups/iad/
Incredible Art Resources
http://www.princetonol.com/groups/iad/lessons/middle/

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