From the beginning of our existence human beings have made “things”.  Think ofStonehenge, rock paintings, even the wheel.  Our imagination is one of the things that distinguish us from other animals. 

I heard an International Japanese Business man interviewed on the radio, describing how he had endless ‘technical’ computer experts at his disposal, who could design and make any I.T. based product.  What he didn’t have enough of were individuals with the ‘imaginative ideas’ for his technicians to facilitate.  He felt that schools inJapanhad neglected the ‘creative subjects’.  This was several years ago and I cannot validate his comments but I share his concerns about the current education system. 

Maths, English, and Science is pushed of course, and understandably Computer Technology is highly valued as a contemporary necessity.  Even sport, it seems, is well financed and publicised in the media with our “National Health issues” and the impending Olympic Games.  But if Schools only exist to develop ‘intellect’ then pupils will be short-changed. 

Artists imagine things, analyse things and invent things.  Pupils produce work that shows flair and originality when given the opportunity.  We develop awareness through our ‘study’ and appreciation of the world around us.  Can words always describe an irregular object accurately?  Do photographs adequately show the detail of the structure of objects?  Perhaps drawing provides a deeper interpretation – think about Leonardo’s sketches of ideas flying machines, understanding the structure of the body or just recording ugly faces. 

As an artist, some days I can draw very well, other days I just cannot find the line.  It’s the same for my pupils.  It’s not just the drawing skills though.  It’s the looking, the thinking, the interpretation, the dexterity, the understanding, the curiosity, the challenge.  I’ll stop there.  I’m rambling.

The point is the skills and potential to learn as you create are endless.  Art just for its own sake is valid – a joy, ever so satisfying and frustrating all in one piece of work.  As part of our curriculum, it enhances the pupils character, their comprehension of who they are and how they fit into the world, and it can last a lifetime.  We need to value ‘Art’ in our Schools and celebrate our pupil’s creativity through every media possible, and we need to do it nationally.  

Article by Julie (Art) / 3rd January 2012


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Do we value ART?