By: I. Maluf
The IB Visual Arts program contains three different components: the comparative study (worth 20% of the final grade), the process portfolio (worth 40%) and the exhibition (worth 40%). In the exhibition, students must curate the work created in the two-year course that shows their technical understanding, the exploration of different mediums and their accomplishments in the course. Also, students must produce a curatorial text to explain their theme and intentions behind the works chosen for the exhibition.
St. Paul’s has a history of excellence in the Visual Arts department and many of its students choose to study subjects related to the course in higher education and ensuing careers in the arts. The IB course is rigorous and encourages students to develop their personal style while experimenting with different media and techniques. The art pieces that students must produce are expected to be of a very high quality, and they must focus on composition and formal elements in all of their works.
This year’s IB exhibition was excellent. All students produced beautiful and complex works that ranged from installations to giant oil paintings, and all were extremely successful. There was a myriad of themes such as communication, the inhumane treatment of animals and the theme of culture, and every exhibition was different to the last. The artists managed to convey their personal identities through their work, and each part of the exhibition was very particular to the artist and their theme.
In the opening night, the audience marveled over the details in each individual piece, observing how elaborate they were and the thought put into each one of them. One of the highlights of the opening night was the conceptual art piece that one student created that consisted of a cow-shaped cake being cut and served to the audience. The cake was bright red and represented the cruelty of eating an animal. Photos of this price were taken and are going to be sent to the IB.
Overall, this year’s IB exhibition was remarkable and all artists should be praised due to their wonderful pieces and curatorial texts. They weren't only aesthetically pleasing, but the works also had the power of sending messages to the audience about several important issues, and the pieces also has the power to made them contemplate. Now, we just have to wait for the current Lower Sixth Visual Art students to make their own exhibition next year!