The art teacher stood in the front of the classroom, expertly showing kindergarten students how to create a picture of a farm using colored pastels. She explained perspective and showed them how to draw farm animals by using simple shapes.
I loved walking around the room watching the students create their own masterpieces. Even though the instruction from the teacher was simple to follow, every picture turned out differently.
I love that about art!
At the Metropolitan Museum of Art there is currently an exhibit created by 83 students from the five boroughs of New York City. It includes paintings, prints, sculptures, photographs, mixed-media works, collages, and drawings. This year marks the eleventh anniversary of P.S. Art.
Following are some comments made by some of these student artists:
pre-school student: self-portrait
“This is me. When I’m sad Mommy hugs and kisses me. I’m happy because Mommy is hugging me. I like to make pictures for my Mommy. She says, ‘I’m so proud of you.’ Mommy always loves my pictures because she loves me very much.”
3rd grade student: cityscape
“When you work very hard at something, you will be rewarded inside yourself. I want people who see my work to know that you need to think about what you do, and that art takes a lot of time. Art is special to me.”
5th grade student: self-portrait
“My artwork is about life. I want the viewer to be aware that people hide in the shadows and they should not.”
7th grade student
“Art is my platform, my journal, my autobiography, and my looking glass into a world I can create and control. Art has allowed me to shape my world and make it truly my own by creating a positive environment in which I truly can express who I am without judgement or criticism” …
8th grade student
“Art has taught me that something doesn’t have to be perfect for it to have a lasting effect.”
11th grade photography student
“I believe that we go through the journey of our everyday lives blindly, not really taking time to consider what is around us. At times we can miss the beauty of simple things or even just something strange to our eyes. As an artist, my eyes are slightly wider and more open to the world and my surroundings.”
“Close observation of student artwork…gives a special window into how young people understand and explore the world around them. I can think of nothing more thrilling for our student artists than to see their work hanging in one of the world’s greatest museums.” —Caroline Kennedy, Honorary Director, The Fund for Public Schools
To see all of the children’s art in a slide show, visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art
An online catalog is also available. It includes photos with descriptions of the artist and the art. It is fun to look at the art and read the student’s comments.
I applaud all individuals who continue to encourage artistic development!
Additional information about New York City is available on my blog NYC Notebook