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Defining Education Essay

1009 words - 4 pages

Liz MeyerDiscover ChicagoThe Demystification of Art10/2/14Artists' Service in the CommunityThe Demystification of Art portrays different instances where an artist or their murals has benefitted a community. In all of these examples the artist has served the community by addressing aspects of collective life, making art play a role in social struggles and societal changes. The author describes that artists greatly in the community well, and I agree with him in the sense that artists can change local opinions, help bring cultural issues to the surface and promote interaction in a public space. This can be seen from the experience of painting the first mural in Logan Square, in Westtown's Unidos para Triunfar, and in murals all around the country.To explain, it is clearly seen through the experience of painting the first mural in Logan Square that an artist can serve a community by changing the way they think about art and artists. As told by Caryl Yasko in The Demystification of Art,"[In Logan Square at the time] To the public, anyone who could submit to such hard labor [painting a mural] must either be crazy or getting grand union wages."[1: "The Demystification of Art" p.g. 90.]This shows that the community only thought that an artist was getting paid huge amounts of money to paint some picture on a wall, or that he was just plain wild. They obviously did not think highly of art during the beginning process of the mural. As time went on, the community warmed up to the artist and the mural because they were amazed at the changes that took place form week to week. They could see the artist's vision coming together. Eventually, citizens were bringing or buying the artist lunch and changing their discourse about art. As claimed by Yasko,"The local public learned to pronounce the word mural, and the vocabulary used in questions changed from "What does it mean?" to "What does the mural represent?" The public also experienced the meaning of the murals through an eyewitness opportunity to watch the painting develop."[2: "The Demystification of Art" p.g. 91.]Undoubtedly, the community feelings of cynicism changed to feelings of respect and curiosity. Logan Square residents now boast that their mural is the best in Chicago. So, this real account of a societal change proves that artists can serve a community by changing skeptical and unpleasant feelings.Next, we should take a look at how the artists of Unidos para Triunfar surfaced cultural issues in Westtown. John Weber painted a mural in this neighborhood containing a large Puerto Rican population, Poles, whites, Chicanos, and pockets of African Americans. The mural was painted at a past shooting site to show that even in a spot of grief and separation there could be unity. This mural was supported and disputed by many. New figures and colors had to be added to please everyone in the community and this mural was even defaced by the dissatisfaction of isolation of specific groups of people. The...

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