Friday, November 17, 2006

Re-post: What is art? Just a little question, then ;-) - Oct 05

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

We had this great conversation at the home ed meeting on Monday about art. Not so much art as a whole, or abstract concept (though I did get did get into that with another home ed parent, who is an artist, a couple of years ago and found it to be an absolutely absorbing issue.)

On Monday we were talking, really, about the kind of art that takes place in home ed circles with children, and in families where there is 'good parenting'. Teach your children to be creative, and all that. What I actually said was, "Lyddie's fascinated by autumn, and the falling leaves and in some way I feel that perhaps I should be doing the collage thing with her, but it doesn't actually mean anything to me, and what's it all for anyway and why should I do something that means nothing just because it's the done thing?" - or words to that effect. Because I'm sure that there will be dead leaves being dutifully and artistically stuck to various kinds of paper at home ed meetings and kitchen tables all around the country just now. But - why?

We didn't have time to get very deeply into it, because it was nearly home time when we started, but someone else *waving to her as I know she reads sometimes* said she'd been some thoughts about how to deal with the subject of art regarding her children.

I think for art to be of much interest to me it has to have some other function, besides just looking 'nice' - whatever that means. I'm interested in symbolism and colour and how these affect us psychologically and we feel the need to create them and use them to change our environments. But sticking leaves on a bit of paper and then onto the wall.... why?

Outside on the ground the leaves are serving a useful function. They look best in situ, and when they break down they're recycling nutrients into the soil. I can appreciate their beauty there far more than when they're stuck to a picture on a wall.

If you've spent some time this week making autumn collages with your child, do please leave a comment and enlighten me. I'm aware that I might be missing something and I'd like to know what it might be.

posted by Gill at 8:54 AM 10 comments


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