News Column

Museum of Art goes back to school

August 19, 2014

By Phillip Valys, Sun Sentinel

Aug. 19--Call it a TED talk for fine-art buffs.

That's the description Bonnie Clearwater, director of the NSU Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale, is giving to her new series of art-education conferences debuting next spring at the downtown museum and its neighbor, the NSU AutoNation Academy of Art and Design.

Dubbed "The Art of Teaching Art," the conference is the museum's long-promised shakeup and expansion into arts education, in the works since the hiring of Clearwater in September 2013. Clearwater will tap local and international museum curators, art historians, professional artists and art teachers to visit and speak on the impact that fine-art teaching has on triggering creativity, even in nonartists.

"Working to present arts education was one of the reasons I was attracted to the museum in the first place," says Clearwater, who's also planning a second conference for spring 2016. "I wanted to use art teaching to boost creativity and critical thinking for everyone, not just teachers and students. I think learning art sharpens critical thinking and observation in other jobs."

Clearwater's says the two-day conference, funded through a donation by South Florida art teacher Conni Gordon, is tentatively set for an "April 2015 time frame," to coincide with Broward County public schools returning from spring break. During the sessions, educators, including Clearwater, plan to critique artists' in-progress works, and offer feedback on how the arts can apply to any workplace.

Talks will take place inside the museum's 255-seat Horvitz Auditorium (1 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale), with breakout sessions held across the street at AutoNation Academy (4 W. Las Olas Blvd.).


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Source: South Florida Sun Sentinel (FL)

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