Artist Ann Scango’s Thoughts on the Need for Increased Art Education

Living in Texas artist Ann Scango is the founder and operator of the Scango Collection. An art gallery the Scango Collection exclusively features works by female artists. An artist herself Ann Scango whose name is well known in Texas creates 2 and 3D artworks. Her mediums are both human-made and occur in nature. To create a piece she might combine polyurethane foam with sticks and dirt or whatever else she finds around her home city of Austin. Scango sees her gallery as an expression of her passions art, the empowerment of women, conscious pieces of art, and the environment.

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Not surprisingly, Ann Scango is concerned about the lack of emphasis schools place on art education. She recently wrote about a 2002 Ted Talk given by Mae Jemison on that very topic. It was Jemison’s assertion that schools don’t appreciate the relationship between art and science. As a doctor, astronaut, and dancer Jemison embodies that relationship. Diminished government funding also contributes to the decline in art education. Mae Jemison called for schools to strike a balance between test preparation and teaching critical thinking. As Ann Scango see it in the 16 years since Jemison delivered that talk the problem has continued unabated.

Schools that include the arts as part of their curriculum are either magnet or private schools. Scango understands why underpaid teachers are forced to accept an approach to education that she calls “restrictive”. For teachers job security is tenuous. A lack of access to current textbooks and learning materials pose another problem. Ann Scango’s article reaches the conclusion that the current educational methods will produce citizens without critical thinking skills thus negatively impacting future innovation. Ann Scango warns that if schools do not alter the way they approach education the US will suffer for it in the long run.

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