Page 19 - File Name
P. 19

The Humanists
Art illuminates the way past exceptional times of turmoil
        At the IB Art Vernissage this March 2022, eight Grade 12 IB ARTists showcased the power of comradeship, vulnerability and optimistic resolve to produce inimitable works of human ingenuity.
It was the first IB Art Vernissage since 2019. After a two- year hiatus, FIS exhibited the result of the journey of eight Grade 12 IB Art students working together since Grade 10
and through the height of the pandemic. Covid-19 was the tip of their teen world iceberg. There’d been climate chaos and Fridays for Future, perfect Insta skin and alternative facts, walls between countries going up as inclusivity and global harmony went down.
And yet they persevered to create art that is the antithesis of the angst of our zeitgeist, the perfectionism of social media, the digital divisiveness of 0-1 quantifiers. They produced the sort of thing an algorithm won’t mimic for a very long time, if ever. Their art pieces are both distinctive and cohesive, personal and universal, supple and strong, broad-stroked and precise.
We live in times of digital perfectionism and physical turmoil. But this Vernissage filled hearts with happy hope. How was this possible?
Art Studio: A Safe Haven to Embrace Human Vulnerabilities
and Imperfections
“Thereisnocreativitywithoutvulnerability,”statestheAmerican academic Brené Brown, widely known for her research and TED talks on vulnerability, shame and leadership. Coming of age in crushing times, these artists were an exceptionally vulnerable
IB ARTists’ self portraits (clockwise from top left): “Inner Joy”
by Florentine W., “Catching Lights” by Jenny Y., “Euphoric” by Natalie F., “Motionless” by Jana K., “Self Portrait Piece” by Anaїs A., “Two Red” by Izzy M., “Growth on my Mind” by Whitney Y., “Shakti” (Power) by Prisha G.
lot. To help unleash their creative power, FIS Art teacher Jessica Russo Scherr devised a series of informal critiques to establish a safe environment to explore:“We talked about intentions and challenges during the art-making process. This helped them get into the habit of discussing their works in progress without fear of judgement.” The non-judgmental space allowed the artists to embrace their personal vulnerabilities – and boldly embrace it they did.
Jenny Y. made them the theme of her exhibition, “The Truth and Power of Vulnerabilities.” Enduring hospitalization inspired Catching Lights, the darkest and most void of color of all self-portraits in the show. But this is not a painting of pain. Flashes of fairy lights overlay the despondent face; the viewer is first intrigued, then relieved: hope trumps hardship.
“It’s about me wanting to reach the light,” says Jenny, whose main message is that“vulnerabilities can be beautiful.”Jenny’s classmate Anaїs A. agrees. She considers that the weight of expectations causes much stress and anxiety, leading to a skewed sense of self and disconnect from reality. “But collaged together in a larger context, insecurities and distorted self- perceptions become a beautiful work of art,” as her pieces Glitch or Assimetrico show.
June 2022 FIS World 17

   17   18   19   20   21