Thoughts on 22 Theses

1. Students should be accorded respect; teachers should earn it.
I think everyone deserves respect, at least until they prove otherwise.

4. If you’re wrong or you don’t know, bloody well say so.

Yes, completely agree.

5. No-one should propose to others a task that they are themselves not prepared to carry out immediately and publicly. Put less combatively – quiet co-working on a common task (either individual or collaborative) is a form of teaching. The more the lines between student and teacher are blurred, the better.

Maybe, but others may be prepared to stretch their boundaries more than some, as long as it is always clear that the task is about stimulation and not intended to intimidate.

9. Teaching art is like shouting from one vessel to another in the middle of a force ten gale.

Interesting – I’ll need to bear this in mind!

11. A familiarity with culture beyond the visual, some knowledge of history, geography, languages, some familiarity with the sciences, a keen interest in the world; whilst these are not essential, they’re helpful more often than not.

To add to that I would say that I think any personal experience can only contribute beautifully to the making of art – it could never be detrimental.

12. Work made under constraints of time, materials, theme, constitutes the artist’s five finger exercises. An artist is someone who, abandoned in a deep forest or on a desert isle, with only a pebble to mark with and a rock to mark upon will nevertheless make something of interest.

…and I think being given the opportunity to rise to such a challenge allows artistic development to flourish. (Not that I suggest students be abandoned in a deep forest or desert isle)

20. Like it or not, parenting is quite a good analogy for teaching. Caring, nurturing, leading, learning when to look away, when not to intervene, handing over, letting go. Of course it’s not exact, but it indicates some responsibilities and trajectories.

I agree wholeheartedly – not forgetting patience also.

Sam Humphreys, Multi Media Artist & Tutor