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independent art schools

updated sun 20 jan 08


steve graber on sat 19 jan 08

i think what you outlined here is why art and independent art schools will become a strong market in the next 20 years. recall years back when schools held real gym classes? budgets were dumping them, and independent gyms started to open up?

my thought then was i never paid for a gym class, why would i?

in time many of us did or still do.

i suspect on a different scale people will head back to art classes.

i taught an adult education class for the city of lakewood, california for several years (sorry, was that spam?). i noticed the people showing up typically wanted to get OUT of the house, DIDN'T want to go to a gym, or movie, or bar, but just WANTED to get out of the house... they wanted to see new people, and wanted to mess around with clay & be a little creative.

~ so i slid us off topic but you can smile while the guy will only buy a mug and you have a class full of 30 students at $25 a night...

just like the scarecrow taunting the apple trees to throw apples at him in the wizzard of oz... who's the smarter one?

see ya

Steve Graber, Graber's Pottery, Inc
Claremont, California USA
The Steve Tool - for awesum texture on pots!

----- Original Message ----
From: Richard G. Ramirez
Sent: Friday, January 18, 2008 5:29:32 PM
Subject: Re: ticked off

Hello Fred,
I know what you mean.
I teach ceramics/art at a high school here in Sacramento. Mostly the kids come from a middle to upper middle class. Parents expectations are that their child do well in all their classes. But, their main concern is that their child do well in the classes that count! English, math, history and science. Those are the classes that will get you into college and give you a better chance of getting a good job and earning a good income. Too much book learning and not enough using all the senses.
The results are that many of our students do not take art classes until their later years of school. It amazes me that many of these students don't know what they've missed by not experiencing early in their life the simple pleasures of knowing how the body and mind work in producing art.
I'm sure many people feel that art is secondary and not all that important.
I guess that's why our art programs aren't supported as much as other educational programs. I end my talk with the students, in telling them that one of the first experiences that an infant starts to experience while still in the womb is part of the art experience, sharping our senses. I give examples on how art has given pleasurable moments to the learning child, the aging citizen, the incarnated prisoner, the
institutionalized and I even mention how the well to do with that good job spends plenty to decorate and surround themselves with ART.
Keep making art!
"The Clay Stalker"
Richard G. Ramirez

Fred Parker wrote:
I've served/am serving on two arts-related boards of directors. One was
an arts center where classes were taught in abundance. The other a
community arts foundation. On one I was one of two board members actually
doing art. On the other, the only one.

These are not shows, but from what I have seen both types of organizations
consist of the same kinds of people; namely individuals who, for some
reason are motivated to do something for "the arts" but know very little
if anything about any of the Arts.

The result is usually (in my experience) the same: things happen (shows,
festivals, art galleries, arts centers etc.) because many of them are, by
nature, organizers and "joiners" whereas most artists are not. On the
downside, because they have such limited connections to actual art the
passion/spirit/soul/vitality of it all is missing or attenuated. To them
artists are still like artists were in college -- the weird, odd-dresser
from over in the art department. Not "one of us." The hippie. "They
will be happy with a couple of bucks and a can of tuna -- artists are like
that." "Oh, that was a great chateaubriand! Now where did the valet put
my BMW?"

Ok. I'm getting carried away. The message goes back to mutual respect.
That's why they didn't see to it that the artists would be served. They
didn't think you deserved it. You're a hippie artist. Ask a lawyer in a
Brooks Brothers suit who thinks your pottery is priced too high what his
hourly billing rate is, then compare it to yours and ask him to comment on
the reason. Most will honestly believe his handiwork is more valuable
than yours. He had to go to law school to learn how to write a contract.
Never mind what you had to do to learn what you do.

Yeah, I'm annoyed by it all. I'm tired of trying to convince them. I'm
especially tired of trying to show the passion to the assholes who "serve
on arts organizations" as a social tool so they can tell their friends
they can't play bridge Friday night because they have to "go to an
opening" or some such artsy reason when they have no clue what they are
seeing beyond the others like them who will also be there. That's why I
don't do much sculpture anymore -- just functionl things like bowls and
plates and incense burners and mugs and the like. I like to make them and
not once has anybody stared distantly at one and said, "What is it? What
does it mean?"

There's much more but I think I'm nearing the space limit.

Fred Parker

On Thu, 17 Jan 2008 18:03:54 EST, Mark Issenberg wrote:

>Some shows actually treat the artists properly but I think most dont. I
>did 4 Bridges last year and they said there was food for the artists
>we had to wait till the patrons got there fill first.. Well guess what,,
>there was no food the Artists when it was our turn. I would have brought a
>sandwich ..That was on the Friday night where we had to be at our space.

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