Wednesday, April 21, 2010

American Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore

I was fortunate enough to visit the American Visionary Art Museum during my travels to Baltimore last week. When wondering how long I must allow for the place, one art educator said, "Oh, it's all folk art; an hour was plenty for me." How she came to that conclusion, I'll never understand.

The American Visionary Art Museum displays outsider art, significant different from folk art. I am infinitely distressed that the museum does not offer a catalog of their permanent exhibits, so I cannot attach names to many of the pieces or collections I saw. However I offer the following: Consider the war rugs from Afghanistan that incorporate not flowers, but tanks, grenades, and airplanes. Consider the work by the schizophrenic, institutionalized for years, to be released to an apartment in which in became a hoarder, later to pass and leave to family a body of incredible work. Consider the blocks of soap, sculpted to emulate miniature prison cells, right down to the precise shape of a toilet. And consider Saddam Hussein's personal doctor who privately painted his fears and visions of the life he knew to be true.

The AVAM is not to be missed. Nor is the AVAM website and the rich information and resources offered to educators as well as the general public.
What is Outsider Art?
Check out the IOEMA Collection.
For more outsider art, look at The Outsider Art Pages.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

NAEA Conference in "Charming" Baltimore

I'm in the midst of my visit to Baltimore and my first National Art Educators Assoc. conference and I'm SO happy! I submitted two presentation proposals hoping I'd get to present one and the NAEA accepted BOTH of them shoot me now! So, on top of finishing my masters thesis, I've been planning these. Presented Beet Juice and Ed Ruscha on Wednesday and Abstract Expressionism Postmodern and Social Justice style today. Was a nervous WRECK: presented my first one, a 60 minute lecture, in 20. Took me back to those early days of teaching! Didn't have time to polish the second, so I saw myself as sorta bozoish.

I've been to 8 other workshops and am going home with a spinning head. I have SO much to read, consider, share, and write. Wish I didn't have to go to Texas, Pennsylvania, or Ohio for a doctorate in Art Ed. Looking at Stanford.

If you came to one, or both, of these sessions, my apologies to you for looking sO scattered. I pretty much was. If you're still interested in the PowerPoints, I will have them posted somewhere as soon as I get back to California, and will provide the location here. And thanks again for coming!