I have come to believe that a great teacher is a great artist and that there are as few as there are any other great artists. Teaching might even be the greatest of the arts since the medium is the human mind and spirit.
Artists to my mind are the real architects of change, and not the political legislators who implement change after the fact.
William S. Burroughs
Artists are traditionally resistant to labels.
Artists have really never had any representation on Capitol Hill, because it’s not the nature of the artist to join together and make a unified presence. Those days kind of died in the ’60s.
All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.
All children are artists, yet we often try to take it away from them in the pursuit of testing…I’m sorry, education. Until they are told, in one way or the other, they can’t dance well, or sing well, or draw well, or tell a story/act well…well, they will just DO IT. They don’t start off with the negative filters that destroy them along the way.
I integrated all different art forms in the theatre classes. I looked to have the students explore, for themselves, how to find their artistic voice. Too many times, a student would tear up a piece of artwork. “Why?” would come out of my mouth. “Because it’s no good” or variations of that. Looking at the unfinished work, judgments in this child’s mind were already formed. Where it came from was beyond my scope most times. Seeing these 500+ students only once a week, for 45 minutes at a clip, did not afford me the full in-depth deciphering of their psyches.
Sometimes I would notice that the child would look at what someone else was doing and immediately stop. Rip, crumple, toss, and then maybe a hissy fit. Did this student have his work compared to another piece of art, directly or indirectly? Jealousy? Fear of failure? Ridicule lessons in the classroom or at home, or both? Honestly, most times I could not tell you. I’d let the classroom teacher know when she/he would pick the class up, but more often than not they dismissed it with the “oh, you know how ______ is.”
When does the toddler who throws him/herself into their art become their own worst critic?
As to adults, why do many of us turn away from embracing an art form that we love? I often tell any class I lead, no matter what age level this very simple thing: When we create in art, there is no wrong answer, and there should be no judgment of what or how we do it. We CAN all sing, paint, dance, act, tell a story, play a musical instrument (yes, you can do percussion). If we compare it (See rule #1 above) to someone who either has practiced their artistic craft for years upon years (or are just artistic savants), well…we just do ourselves a disservice.
So what if you’re off key, can’t draw a straight line, are a klutz. If you love it, DO IT. Just do it. Do it for the love and happiness you feel when you let yourself be free. I can sing, but my voice is not trained like it used to be and I go off key a lot. My art is mainly doodles. My music is percussive or on a kazoo. My artistic language comes out in the written and spoken word, but I do sing, I do dance, I do play music, and I do art.
YOU DO ART…All children are artists. We’re still those same children, but the art has been beaten out of you. Take it back.
Give it back. Give the arts back to the schools.
The reason actors, artists, writers have agents is because we’ll do it for nothing.
That’s a basic fact – you gotta do it.