WRITING FOR THE EXHIBITION

Hi students, if you are in a Northern Hemisphere school and in your final year as a DP visual arts student, the end is nigh. DP Arts deadlines are earlier than the deadlines for other DP subjects, and your teacher will probably ask for various files even before the ‘official’ deadlines so that he/she can check that all is OK. It’s probably a little stressful for you, but I know quite a few teachers who find this time of the year very ...

BLOOD, DUST AND CULTURE

I was forced to re-evaluate my definition of culture (and perhaps the many meanings of the word 'civilization') one night in Northern Tanzania when a group of Maasai tribesmen suggested that I drink the hot blood of a freshly slaughtered goat. This is life, Jim, I thought – but not as we know it. I’d watched the killing of the goat, and the invitation to drink the blood was a generous gesture of their hospitality, but no more than that – a ...

PROPOSED CHANGES TO THE VISUAL ARTS ASSESSMENT CRITERIA

Are you mad? Changing the criteria? The course has only just had its first examinations session and they are thinking of changing them already?     Like any good organization, the DP visual arts curriculum and assessment teams review, consider and where necessary adjust. And having scrutinized the files of many thousands of students in May, June and July, the decision was made to tweak the assessment criteria for the 2017 examination sessions. “Tweak” is the operative work here. There are of course no big ...

EXHIBITION ISSUES (part 3)

REFLECTING ON EXHIBITION FILES PART 3: In my last two visual arts teacher Blog posts (June and July) I discussed issues and aspects of exhibitions submitted for moderation that I’d seen as an examiner. This is the third and final post relating to this. Some of those previous 'issues' included teacher comments, the value of trauma, exhibition photographs and size and scale (etc) and might have reflected a misunderstanding of some aspects of the course. This month I am continuing this ...

Visual Arts Exhibition Issues

I’ve seen a good few visual arts exhibition uploads since April 21st and I’m pleased to say I have seen some wonderful work. It’s one of the best parts of the job and the teachers and students who upload such great work should be congratulated. Their work is frequently sensational. In fact during the Grade Award face-to-face meetings in the IB Assessment Centre in Cardiff, visual arts senior examiners can often be found sitting in a room filled with screens and ...

Everything you wanted to know about your PP and your VAJ (but were afraid to ask)

One issue seems to puzzle some students: What is the relationship between the Process Portfolio and the Visual Arts Journal (henceforth referred to respectively as the PP and the VAJ)? Some students feel the VAJ has little importance because they see that the PP gets 40% of the marks and the VAJ does not appear to be assessed at all (in the sense that there is no VAJ assessment component) …Hence the feeling that the PP is essentially the same as the VAJ ...

The Curious Rat (aka Curatorial Rationale)

My Visual Art students call it the Curious Rat, because "Curatorial Rationale" is a bit of a mouthful. Anyway, its March, and the digital upload ‘window’ for final examination submission of visual arts files is open – so it’s time for you (especially if you are a visual arts student in the final year of your course) to finalize your files! It’s a busy time and it may be tempting to focus on (for example) finishing some of the resolved artworks in your ...

Top Ten Visual Arts Tips (and Reminders) for Students!

OK, students, here are the Visual Arts Top Ten Tips for exam success. Its February and next month – or at the latest the following month - is upload time. I have provided tips for each of your three assessment components. Read, respond and relax! THE COMPARATIVE STUDY (20%) 1 CULTURAL CONTRAST Your selected artworks must come from more than one cultural context. They may be from a similar time frame or cultural tradition, provided that there is depth to the consideration of how each ...

The Digital Upload: First Time For The New Course – What To Do!

This all relates to the imminent visual arts examination session. It goes without saying (I hope) that you should have everything ready for the upload well BEFORE you start the upload process: that means, for example, a digital folder called “Exhibition” containing a series of folders for the exhibition files for each of your students. OK, the nitty gritty: in order of things to be uploaded. The upload starts with IBIS. You should have your User ID, password and PIN ready. 1 Predicted Grade and ...

YOUR BODY is YOUR ART (?)

Question: can anything be art? This, of course, is as much a DP Theory of Knowledge question as a DP visual arts one, and it may be a question that you have already tried to answer either in school or out. In many ways the definition of art is constantly changing, just as the things that artists do evolve and sometimes challenge conventions.   Use your body Some mark-making ‘conventions’ are very old but still not exactly traditional.  In the French Pyrenees the walls ...