Young people who participate in the arts for at least three hours on three days each week through at least one full year are:
- 4 times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement
- 3 times more likely to be elected to class office within their schools
- 4 times more likely to participate in a math and science fair
- 3 times more likely to win an award for school attendance
- 4 times more likely to win an award for writing an essay or poem
Dawoud Bey’s career and art exemplify the power of art. While a teenager living in New York, the now Chicago-based artist went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to see the noise and demonstrations regarding the highly controversial Harlem on My Mind show. But when he got there nothing was going on outdoors, so instead he went to see the show. This was the first time the young Bey, as well as a lot of white folks of northern European heritage, had ever seen black subject matter in a museum. He was particularly moved by the signifcant work of James Van Der Zee (who if it weren’t for this show would probably have been lost to history.)
Dawoud Bey got a camera from a relative and began to shoot. Just eight years later he had a one-person show of his own at the Studio Museum of Harlem — which is now on exhibit at the Art Institute of Chicago. And at the Renaissance Society, opening Sunday is a survey of Bey’s work since then; most often pictures of youths of color who look directly into the lens, and because of the remarkable man behind the camera who is gentle, powerful, trusting and trusted, reveal themselves.
Vera Klement is an octogenarian kid, with the knowledge, wisdom and talent of her years and the energy, output and enthusiasm of someone a quarter of her age. She is a remarkably gifted painter whose work continues to grow — as is apparent in her show opening tonight at Zolla/Lieberman.Her sectioned paintings are like symphonies of self-contained movements that contribute to a larger whole. The poignant beauty of her work references literature, history and us.
Harvey Weinstein’s recent battle to secure a PG-13 rating for Bully was a classic example of film industry power brokers attacking the messenger instead of heeding the message. Whatever crude language may have been included in the original edit of the film was language being spewed by kids who feel compelled to attack those they perceive as vulnerable targets….
With today’s youth spending so much time playing violent video games — and action movies aimed at a demographic of teenage boys who like to see things explode and watch people get beaten up — it should be obvious that poor parenting can’t be the only factor contributing to a nation of adolescent thugs.
Whether kids see bullying as a way to prove their superiority, exert their newfound masculinity, or simply as an opportunity for comic relief at someone else’s expense, it’s important to understand that bullying is nothing new. Even after college hazing rituals have resulted in accidental deaths and numerous gay teens have committed suicide, many parents and school administrators cling to the misguided belief that being the victim of bullying “is all part of growing up.”
Herndon Graddick, the new President of GLAAD recalls that:
“It wasn’t until I left Alabama for California that I learned that everything I had been taught was essentially bullshit. I got pissed. Kids across the country are making themselves miserable and, frankly, leading themselves to the brink of suicide because of the bullshit they learn from a bigoted society and it’s the role of GLAAD to fix that. We’re no longer the silent sort of invisible presence in our community. My ambition is for gay people and transgender people to be treated fairly in the media just like anybody else. I think it’s finally time for us to grab our power and really use it to make sure that we’re not sort of treated as second-class citizens anymore. I think it’s time for our community to go on the offensive. We’re not going to be the punching bags anymore.”
Importance of the Visual Arts in Education
Today more than ever the arts are needed by our young people as a forum for safe expression, communication, exploration, imagination, and cultural and historical understanding. See how Arts to Grow aligns with this statement.
Below are a list of reasons why the visual arts are so important at each grade level:
· Brain research confirms that Arts education strengthens student problem-solving and critical thinking skills, adding to overall academic achievement, school success, and preparation for the work world.
· Art classes provide students a chance to develop cognitive and creative skills, and to develop their imaginations.
· For some students Art is their motivation for coming to school and an area where they have success or excel, providing an important balance in their total educational experience.
· The arts teach our students to be more tolerant and open through multicultural and historical perspectives and through their involvement in the creative process itself.
Calling all afterschool artists!
From Aftershool Allience:
We want your artwork for our 2012 Lights On Afterschool poster. The deadline
for submissions is May 1, 2012.
Posters are sent to afterschool programs from coast to coast for Lights On Afterschoolcelebrations. The artist and/or program will be credited on the poster, and the image will be featured on our website. The winning image will be printed on 70,000 posters displayed nationwide!
Guidelines for creating artwork (download guidelines.pdf):