Thinking about art

Today I had a Zoom meeting with the university lecturer I’m working with on this data engineering course, to discuss our progress and plan the next week or two of work. We’re making progress on things and integrating stuff to keep the curriculum flowing from week to week. He also mentioned that a colleague was looking for some proofreading for journal paper submissions, to see if I was interested in a bit more casual work. So after the meeting he contacted her and put me in touch with her. So hopefully this will lead to a bit more paid work for me.

My wife decided it would be a good day to send Scully in for doggie daycare so that she can socialise with other dogs. Scully really enjoys it there. I took her in and she got super excited when she realised where we were going. After dropping her off I went to the hardware store to buy some humidity removing crystals and containers. I found a little mould in our garage storage cupboards yesterday, and given how ridiculously humid the weather has been for the past few weeks, I think it’s necessary to take steps to reduce the humidity in those cupboards.

From the hardware store I drove over to that new bakery at Naremburn that I’ve been enjoying occasionally, to get a pie for lunch. They also had chocolate custard tarts today, so I tried one of those for dessert, and it was really good.

This afternoon I had to work solidly on writing the new ethics class for this week. The topic is art, and it’s really more of a critical thinking topic than an ethics one, although I included a few ethical questions in there. The main thrust of the questions was to get the kids thinking about what art is, how it might be defined, what counts as art and what doesn’t, and why we make art. I just got it finished in time for tonight’s triple classes, which mostly went pretty well. Phew!

New content today:

2 thoughts on “Thinking about art”

  1. the ethics of art exploded here last week – one artist made a painting with an ultra-orthodox jew picture and the words “Jerusalem of gold – Jerusalem of crap” next to it. The mayor of the town where the picture was presented saw it and went balistic – he insisted on taking the painting off for being derogatory. Other artists in the museum covered their works with black canvas as a protest, and there was a whole deal in courts whether it was a legitimate move or not. Eventually the talks about how to present the work without offending people by accident (intentionally is fine) – came to a dead end, and the whole exhibition was cancelled.
    At least nobody got murdered over it, but it was still pretty nasty. Of Course, if the mayor hadn’t reacted so loudly, nobody would have heard about that artist or that work – it’s a small museum and not many people even know it exists. Even bad press is good press…

    1. Wow. Yeah, one of the questions I ask in my class this week is “Is it okay for art to be deliberately offensive?” The kids have mostly said it’s okay, though many have qualified it as only okay if it’s designed to be offensive in order to get some sort of message across, or make people think about the issues that arise. Only a few kids have said it’s not okay at all.

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