Art Education - A Mindless Activity No Longer

  • Peter Berrisford Eastbourne College of Education


I suggested recently, under the somewhat provocative heading, 'art education - is it a mindless activity?' 1, that much current art teaching, especially in secondary schools, is over biased towards the practical for its own sake. The sensuous triumphs over the intellectual instead of partnering it: art as high culture is left out of the reckoning.

If this is true, then we are failing to properly equip pupils for their futures. After reaching adulthood, few people continue as practitioners of art. If they have any interest in art at all their roles are interpretative or appreciative. 'Doing' by itself, however splendidly motivated and equipped, cannot educate for such roles. Whence would come the wherewithal to comprehend art if there was lacking kr.lOwledge of the history and purposes of art down the ages? Even the few actual practitioners need an historical background for their work; art grows out of other art just as much as it grows out of observation, emotion, handling the medium, and the like.

How to Cite
BERRISFORD, Peter. Art Education - A Mindless Activity No Longer. Studies in Design Education Craft & Technology, [S.l.], v. 6, n. 1, aug. 2009. ISSN 0305 766. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 08 june 2023.