becky schroeder on sat 17 nov 01
do not think art departments are alone in not training people to be
competent in their profession. i love being a nurse but i can assure you i
did not become a nurse in nursing school. it just gave me the degree and
permission to sit for boards. everything i learned about real nursing
started after i graduated. nursing theory is even more full of BS than art
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John Jensen on sat 17 nov 01
Maybe it's meaningful to make a distinction between academic training and
other forms. By "academic" I would mean any systematic formal training,
even to the point of a one on one relationship with a teacher in some cases.
I'm getting the idea that colleges are not doing a very good job of
preparing people to be artists. In my own community here, most if not all
the artists put in serious time in some academic context; but most also feel
that the schools are teaching useless bullshit.
Still most of the "great" artists I can think of had some sort of formal
education in the arts, even if these same artists went on to reject what
they learned in their education.
If someone goes to college, copies their instructors work, plays the
political games and learns the BS jargon and then goes on to make big bucks;
then I guess you could say the system is working for them. I suspect that
such cases are fairly rare. In most cases those who copy the instructors,
play the political games and learn the jargon end up either selling real
estate or teaching in the same sort of academic environment that spawned
To get personal a bit here, I am an artist who is to a great extent self
taught. My own personal struggle has been to learn what the history of art
has to offer without loosing my sense of my own "vision." One of my
teachers once told me an artist is someone who survives their art education.
I have a tendency to loose myself in my teachers, so I have taken them in
manageable doses. I have to give myself over to them enough to learn what
there is to be learned and then somehow work long enough and hard enough to
get past that and come to my own senses again. It is a risky proposition.
Eventually one has to take what one has and go with it.
I still think it is rare for any artist, great or otherwise, to be able to
develop without a period of training. Whether this training is from some
college, an apprenticeship, or involvement with an art academy doesn't seem
like a useful distinction.
John Jensen, Mudbug Pottery
vince pitelka on sun 18 nov 01
> do not think art departments are alone in not training people to be
> competent in their profession. i love being a nurse but i can assure you
> did not become a nurse in nursing school. it just gave me the degree and
> permission to sit for boards. everything i learned about real nursing
> started after i graduated. nursing theory is even more full of BS than
Becky makes a good point here, and I think it can be extended to most fields
of study. A bachelor's degree does not make you an expert potter or nurse
or engineer or insurance agent. Much of the most important learning takes
place on-the-job, and it takes years beyond the degree to really find one's
stride. We need to accept and expect that.
As I have said on Clayart before, it is up to each student in college today
to learn proactively and to pursue their education aggressively, taking
advantage of every opportunity. The way to live a good life is to seek it
out with determination and purpose. Don't wait for it to come to you.
Best wishes -
Appalachian Center for Crafts
Tennessee Technological University
1560 Craft Center Drive, Smithville TN 37166
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615/597-6801 ext. 111, fax 615/597-6803
John Hesselberth on sun 18 nov 01
on 11/18/01 9:24 PM, vince pitelka at vpitelka@DTCCOM.NET wrote:
> Becky makes a good point here, and I think it can be extended to most fields
> of study. A bachelor's degree does not make you an expert potter or nurse
> or engineer or insurance agent. Much of the most important learning takes
> place on-the-job, and it takes years beyond the degree to really find one's
> stride. We need to accept and expect that.
Hi Vince, Becky and all,
I used to tell young engineers when they hired in that they wouldn't really
start earning their salary until they had 5 years experience on the job.
The first 5 years was the company's investment in them--a post graduate
education if you will. It really shocked them because they thought they knew
most everything there was to know, but it was true. All you get in college
is a good foundation and, hopefully, the ability to think and learn
independently. Don't get me wrong; that is an extremely important set of
things to have and most people conclude their college experience was well
worth it. But it is just the beginning.
Web site: http://www.frogpondpottery.com Email: email@example.com
"The life so short, the craft so long to learn." Chaucer's translation of
Hippocrates, 5th cent. B.C.
iandol on mon 19 nov 01
Dear John Hesselberth,
I believe this equates to an "Internship" in some professions and with a =
"Probationary Period" in others. Time spans may vary, but it seems to be =
two or more years.
Consists of on the job training with close supervision, continuing =
reflection and review.