I’m a bit biased when it comes to art. I’m in love with it! While I am not drawn to a certain style or an artist in particular, I am a fan of getting as many people to see art for what it is – an avenue of expression utilizing a gift others possess.
My breakthrough moment was when I was 12 years old and began to volunteer at the Les Malamut Art Gallery, a small gallery in the basement of the Union Public Library, where I was exposed to local people creating art in a myriad of ways and sharing local talent. I have been hooked ever since. I was so amazed by some of the photography that I bought my first piece for $100.00 from an artist in 1993. It hangs in my office today.
I did not take art classes or pursue an artistic career, but, if anyone ever wants to go to a gallery and show me an up-and-coming artist, I’m there.
A few weeks ago 6th-grade students in an art club in my current school district had the opportunity to visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art. As one of the most beautiful museums in the US, it features pop art, an authentic Japanese tea house, medieval armor and weapons, and priceless Van Gogh works.
Twenty years ago it was practical to see such works on slides or in an art book. Today online tours through websites or Periscope, virtual field trips through devices like Google Cardboard, or even robots on wheels with iPads as “heads'”allow everyone to control a walk through the gallery. The tools to provide all learners the ability to see art – whether it be 10 or 100,000 miles away – are here.
Expose your learners to art, regardless of the age or subject you teach. Your students will thank you.