2. Is emphasis on content and finding personal voice important?

Home Forums Dialogue Portal Dialogue Portal: Part I 2. Is emphasis on content and finding personal voice important?

This topic contains 18 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by  gbm5056 2 years, 8 months ago.

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    Paige Lunde

    Indeed, there is a lack of emphasis in the arts on personal expression, largely because of a shift toward standardization over the last 15 years. The problem with standardization is the belief that conceptual ideas should be fixed. This results in limited, accepted approaches to solving problems. The standardization of knowledge allows easy assessment but directs students toward memorization and away from rigorous pedagogy. As a result of testing, visual arts courses become less important because they are outside of the testing loop. Thus, arts programs receive less money and less value from the school system. Yet, a key component of art in school is developing student voices. Content is important, but we need to realize the value of the image. In a Kantian sense, the image provides subjective freedom because it is not fixed and propels the subject into freedom through reflection. This freedom allows the student infinite interpretation and possibility.

    I think personal expression should be integrated into the studio art program and there’s no reason it can’t be included. For example, my students learn about the context of an artist’s personal vision and 10 new techniques for each project. Then, students create a practice artwork based on a theme. Finally, students pick 5 techniques to apply to their own personal design. Developing student voices should be at the forefront of arts education and doesn’t require a whole new system.


    Morisa Young

    Emphasizing content and finding a personal voice is important in art. They are both significant because they create a purpose for the artist. They both give something the viewers to look for and to appreciate. If Judy Chicago didn’t emphasize feminism, we would just look at her work and say, “What’s the point?” We wouldn’t appreciate her work as much as we, or at least I, do because we wouldn’t understand her reasons for her artwork. Also, Judy Chicago’s voice in her work is important because it adds to her purpose. Her point in being a feminist is brought out in her pieces. She uses topics about women that make the general public uncomfortable. For example, the piece The Menstruation Bathroom makes society uncomfortable because it focuses on women’s periods. It is almost a taboo of a topic that is emphasized in this piece to create a point; that people shouldn’t be uncomfortable about something that happens naturally in women. With this content emphasized, and her voice about feminism being tied in, attention is drawn to not only this piece but pretty much all of her work. It makes us looks at certain aspects in our lives in a slightly different way, and makes us appreciate her artwork more. Her work makes us think about they ways things are in society, which is why emphasizing content and finding a personal voice in art is critical.



    Marcela Velasquez
    There tends to be lack of voice when coming to see the emphasis in content. When people talk more about the content and describe the history, origin and time they mislead their voice and the personal touch there needs to be added to the whole piece. In my opinion, there should always be 50/50 because that way the reader learns about the content and at the same time find the personal touch of the writer.



    Each person is blessed with their own thoughts, actions, and opinions. Putting that voice and opinions into action is so important in expressing your thoughts. Sitting back and letting others be in control of what goes on in your life, directly or indirectly, is no way to go through life. I was taught to share what was on my mind and never hold anything back. Some know how to take that and others do not. Expressing your true thoughts, or “not having a filter”, is an amazing thing. Having a personal voice and direct say on the events in your life is crucial. You have the power to control your future. By standing up for what you believe in or just saying what’s on your mind gives you that much more control over the outcome. Be your own advocate.

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