UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Enlightened cherishing of art : formative influences and their relevance to British Columbia art curricula Woods, Joyce H.


The problem was three—fold: (1) to document formative influences on a population who possessed enlightened and cherishing attitudes toward art; (2) to compare their experiences with relevant aspects of Harry S. Broudy's notion of enlightened cherishing; (3) to assess what implications these findings might have for the most recent British Columbia fine arts curricula. Procedure Fifty personal interviews were conducted with a population consisting of visual artists, art critics, art historians, art teachers, art gallery curators, aestheticians, art collectors, and an art consultant. The instrument was an open—ended question schedule which allowed for separate analysis and interpretation of experiences which were: (1) educational (formal) vs. extra-curricular (informal); (2) studio art experiences (aesthetic expression) vs. art critical/historical/aesthetic—based experiences (aesthetic impression). From these taped interviews, thirty were chosen for transcription. The resulting data were categorized and qualitatively analyzed. Comparisons were made with prior research relating to art attitudes, with aspects of Broudy's theory and, finally, with aspects of the British Columbia fine arts curricula. Conclusions : The research supports Broudy's recommendations for more teacher training in art, for art classes at elementary level to occur on a daily basis and for art classes to be given equal status with other subjects in schools. The research does not support Broudy's recommendation that specific art exemplars be chosen by curriculum designers for implementation in the classroom by teachers. Instead, the research suggests that operational-definitional standards in art be suggested by curriculum designers so that teachers may make their own choices for exemplars and, when appropriate, even use exemplars from the realm of what Broudy refers to as popular art. Recommendations : Out of this study come the following recommendations for art education in British Columbia: — that the level of training for elementary generalists be upgraded in areas of aesthetics, art history, and studio methods. — that more art monospecialists be recruited at both elementary and secondary school levels. — that both teacher training and art curricula include references to the significant role (in nurturing a cherishing attitude toward art) played by: a teacher's encouragement of the student's progress in art; open-ended and imaginative teaching strategies allowing for some independence for the student; sound evaluation practices; and knowledge and enthusiasm for the subject area. — that the implementation of art curricula in schools be mandatory and that the art curricula include information on the use and choice of art exemplars (works, materials, and processes). — that time for art (aesthetic expression and aesthetic impression) equivalent to that allotted for other subjects be provided at the elementary school level.

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