What if we lost art?

The “fine arts” are more closely related to having a skill and the creativity to make things with that skill; such as painting, stitching, drawing, pottery, playing guitar, or wacting. Art is not just hanging up in museums; it is everywhere. It is the music you listen to and the clothes that you wear. If all that disappeared from the world, what would there be?

Perhaps a better question would be what would happen if we lost the creativity that goes along with art? Art is in advertisements that we see everyday. Art classes open the door to learning about the creativity that goes into such things.

Last semester, there was a proposal to get rid of the art requirement for the Liberal Studies Curriculum, however it did not go through but, you have to wonder if it had, how would the decision affect the future of our institution? St. Michael’s College is widely known as a Liberal Arts College, which allows students to graduate as well rounded individuals; having been required to take classes outside of their major. As a Spanish major, I have used the curriculum to take math, science, art, and religion classes. I have also developed a new found love for certain subjects such as religion and the arts.The fine art requirement covers anything from painting and drawing, sculpture, theater, and music.

Will Mentor, associate professor of Fine Arts at St. Michael’s College, describes the importance of a Liberal Studies Curriculum. “Liberal arts are deeply important now,” said Mentor. “Taking four years of your life and studying the individuality and connectedness between subjects, I consider that to be one of the most practical things you can do now. You create critical skills”.

We all know the struggle of taking a class that we do not particularly enjoy. Art can be frustrating to some people just like math or science can be frustrating. Art classes have always been different than other classes because you do play with your own creative ideas and anything can happen. Whereas in a science or math class you are working toward a set goal. Brian Collier, assistant professor of Fine Arts at St. Michael’s College, stated that if we lost the art requirement, “if they do not want to take it, then they won’t take it.” Having found an appreciation for art in my junior year of high school at the second school I attended, I can agree exposure is key.

At the first high school I attended, there was no art requirement, so I did not take it. Then when I transferred to another high school, I needed to take an art class.That began a journey and I ended up taking many art classes and have since continued them. The first year at my new school, I took three art electives; drawing, painting, and sculpture. These courses helped open my eyes to the creative world. Then the next year I took more advanced drawing classes and art history courses. Here at St. Michael’s, I have taken a drawing class and all the Art History courses that are offered. While I did not choose to continue my studies in making art, I was still learning about it and how important it really is. After taking my final Art History class at St. Michael’s, Art Since 1960, I see art everywhere.