15 July 2009

A Fine Place to Start...

Elspeth Duncan, a wonderful woman and media artist from Trinidad, had this solid piece of footage from the TED Conference posted on her site. It's from a presentation by Ken Robinson on the "Killing of Creativity" in schools. I thought the video clip deserved a repost, serving as a fine place to start this business blog for artists.

As you will hear, he is quite spot on about the ways in which art education is not respected as academic pursuit. The recent completion of my MA in interdisciplinary studies was a sad statement to that fact. I was, and continue to be, thankful that my sole artist committee member out of three, a filmmaker, posed questions on my accompanying video project during my defense when the remaining examiners could have cared less.

It's ironic in so many ways now, Robinson's speech. Computer and tech-illiterate profs (believe me, there are way more than you can imagine), will soon have no choice but to catch up, learn and value non-textual language within the inescapable realities of image-focused communication in the 21st century. But his speech also made me think of the problems with art education in general: No one teaches you how to live the life of an artist, practically speaking. Art schools don't bother to teach students business (and I'm not talking CVs and gallery proposals). Business schools, on the other hand, only teach "the bottom line."

Unfortunately, too many artists are bred to believe that making a living from their passion is selling out, which is the same side of the disrespect-art-education coin, if you ask me. But many still don't see it that way.

Join me as I dispel that myth.
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