ARE YOU TRYING TO SHOCK ME with the TRUTH?

This month I’m posting about questions provoked by TWO VIDEOS submitted as part of a DP visual arts exhibition submission by a female student. VIDEO 1 A short, (1 minute) dark (in both senses of the word) video. Here is a quote from the text: “My idea and purpose of the video is to create the impression that the female has been raped and urinated on, supposedly by the person behind the camera. The video shows a female being assaulted. She is naked ...

The Rationale (talking the talk vs walking the walk)

There is a DP Visual Arts Curriculum Review in progress at the moment, with a lot of art teachers voicing a lot of art teaching and art education concerns. Their voices are expressed through a lively and fascinating forum, with a lot of thoughts and opinions about art, art teaching, art issues, etc. A couple of recent posts relevant to examination experiences with the current course caught my eye. The authors of both posts are, like me, examiners of the Exhibition component.   1 My ...

YOUR TOP TEN VISUAL ARTS POSTS since 2010!

TOP 10 ART TEACHER favourites: the posts that have interested you most since 2010 Introduction This post is about the most popular visual arts issues as selected by you – i.e. as reflected by hits on the DP visual arts blog site. Out of more than 200 visual arts blogs since 2010 here are the teacher top ten: these may reflect the main issues and questions that interest teachers (or at least have been looked at most times) My latest posts are NOT ...

From Clouds to Desire (“Thematic Relationships” in your visual arts exhibition)

As I’m sure you are well aware, (if you are a 2nd year DP visual arts student) April is UPLOAD month. There are 3 separate deadline dates. The exhibition files upload deadline is April 20. I hope all goes smoothly. My students have already had their final year exhibitions and of course we are hoping that they all do well! We had many discussions about their exhibitions, strengths and weaknesses, and of course the assessment criteria. All of the students explored a number ...

To collaborate, or not to collaborate – that is the question!

There are many reasons to work together. A lot of fantastic learning can happen when we work in pairs or groups. It’s a beautiful thing. In addition, sharing ideas and skills is a great creative PROCESS, and can lead to unusually creative RESOLVED work, with different art-makers being able to contribute specialist competencies. There’s also the idea of socialization and the concept of being part of and contributing to a bigger idea - when discussing plans, sharing ideas etc. Examples of famous and ...

The Curatorial Rationale: avoid ARTSPEAK!

Write in plain English (or Spanish or French) - And avoid ARTSPEAK (“Meaningless convoluted twaddle”). Some people say that art should speak for itself and that writing about art is pointless. In fact in the Theory of Knowledge guide Arts section there is the question, “Is there any point in discussing the arts - should we not simply experience them?” Other questions in the same section are: “How can the subjective viewpoint of an individual contribute to knowledge in the arts?” “On what basis ...

CONCEPTUAL QUALITIES (and experimentation, cliché, objet trouvé & the senses)

Conceptual art can be stimulating, provocative and even fun, so it’s no surprise that DP visual arts students occasionally upload files for their final assessment  that have an emphasis on idea and concept rather than, say, technical skill. They are often in the form of a found object – a feather, a glove, a light-bulb, a chess piece, rubbish, a clock, a computer circuit board, dead flowers - not forgetting, of course, Barbie (etc.) They all represent something and - given the ...

THE SHOCK OF THE NUDE (in school) (2015 update)

Life-drawing fits very well in any or all of the three components in the new DP visual arts course, so I’m re-visiting the concept and suggesting some possible links to the new course As a comparative study - artists of course have been working from the human form for hundreds if not thousands of years, so for example students could examine and compare artworks, objects or artefacts with the theme of the human figure “at least two of which need ...

Happy New Year (and MAKING THINGS YOURSELF!)

*All the below relates to the DP visual arts course for first examinations 2016. Here are some thoughts about the kinds of artwork that can be submitted for your final exhibition. Designing it vs making it If you design a beautiful dress, including the pattern on the fabric, but get someone else to make the dress, the dress can’t be submitted for your final exhibition. The guide says that any work selected for final assessment must have been made or constructed by you ...

Modern Art is Rubbish

“MOST CONCEPT ART IS PRETENTIOUS, SELF-INDULGENT, CRAFTLESS TAT”   (The quote is not new, but was said by the then chairman of the London Institute of Contemporary Arts. http://www.artsjournal.com/visualarts/visualarts0102.shtml)   Does your teacher talk to you about contemporary and/or conceptual art? If so, what are the values and judgment he/she is passing on?   Of course, “contemporary art” is hugely diverse, and the label itself is broad and imprecise.   We could try to narrow it down - possible areas include ‘recent’ art (say, created since the year 2000), ...