Aesthetics And Critical Thinking In Visual Arts Education

People talk of “authentic art experiences” and about how specific pedagogies are designed for authenticity.The concept of authentic art signifies an important idea in art education that has broad implications for how we teach and what we want students to learn.

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It’s what all the historically important artists we admire did and what visionary contemporary artists continue to do today.

It’s also a teachable behavior and an appropriate and necessary part of visual arts curriculum for all age levels.

In the same way, just as making authentic art gives the student an opportunity to apply new skills and the teacher the opportunity to assess learning.

The colors of the painting above were mixed from primaries and the theme of the assignment was “Identity.” About her work she writes, “This artwork represents my ethnicity as an Egyptian and reveals the emotion of the people and of me (the artist) towards the revolution.” Including a combination of exercises and authentic art experiences is important to teach both creative thinking and to build skills.

So, what does it mean and how can it shape our teaching?

Authentic art is work created and planned by the student to express ideas that are personal and meaningful.

In , Dennis Dutton writes, “Whenever the term “authentic” is used in aesthetics, a good first question to ask is, Authentic as opposed to what?

” One might think that everything students do in art class is authentic art. In fact, a good portion of the work done by art students falls into a different category – exercises.

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