Monday, January 14, 2008

Before a captive audience

Ms. Cramer - er Mrs. Rosenberg's art classroom.

In connection with the SOTT exhibit in November, I met several times with an upper level painting class at Littleton High School. Mary Rosenberg contacted me about talking to the students about the exhibit, and helping them embark on an assignment that dealt with personal more thoughtful personal interpretations of a literary source. I was a student of Mary's when she was still known as Ms. Cramer, sometime back in the 20th Century. The class made a trip to the Curtis Center to see the exhibit, and I attempted to explain the origins of the work in a way that, hopefully, would be interesting and perhaps enlightening. I didn't succeed in neither goal.

I then visited the school on two occasions, the first was more jabbering, this time with visual examples that demonstrated how various artists took inspiration, or responded to a literary work, or even an event in a way that went beyond simply regurgitating some narrative with images. On the final visit, I was able to spend more one on one time, hearing about what they were trying to do with their assignments and offering my input.
The concept of creating an adaptation of a source material rather than illustrating that source was not an easily transmitted to the students, but I was very impressed by the way many of them were able to grasp the idea as they progressed on their projects.

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