Art article one-sided
Dear Editor:We would like to respond to Mr. Colson’s article “Museum ends Valley Kids Art Show” of Oct. 12. After reading Mr. Colson’s fairly one-sided article we were left feeling as though there were several points worthy of further consideration. The headline of the article tells only half of the story and, by virtue of neglecting to mention the exchange for the Young Curators Program, it sets a negative tone at the outset. The article asserts that changing the kids show will “hurt local art appreciation.” This is a ponderous and poorly considered statement. Further, the assumption that having their art in the museum is the only way to get kids excited about art is equally naïve. We might suggest that true art appreciation is something to be fostered and enjoyed on a daily basis. To depend upon a single event overemphasizes its importance and perhaps suggests that we should reconsider our own efforts and commitment to art education in our schools and our homes throughout the year.As parents of a local 5-year-old, and as museum members who have participated in all of the programs in question, we agree that they are certainly worthy of a revamp. These programs, as well-meaning as they were, were dated, offered no real connection to the museum and were frequently poorly attended to. To not recognize this would be to take a less than educated, caring and proactive approach to the education of our children. Nor do we feel as though our daughter’s art appreciation will be damaged in any way by omitting the kids show.We might instead view the new Young Curators Program as constructive and more useful because it affords a learning opportunity with a professional organization that cannot be had with the same level of expertise in our schools. We view this change as constructive and intelligent growth.Additionally we might offer that questioning the link between the museum and the community implies that our community is in need of more frequent visits to the museum – with our children. These visits can offer exposure to many wonderful new ideas, aesthetics and perspectives from around the world that have the potential to expand our children’s understanding of the world beyond our valley.Mr. DeWolf’s view is perhaps the most unfortunate in as much as it sounds a bitter old song. His is certainly one of no real understanding with regard to what a curator does. By labeling it as administrative, he illustrates this for us and forfeits his opportunity to offer educated criticism. With appreciation for Mr. DeWolf’s early efforts to establish the museum, we might suggest that the nostalgia be abandoned (the kids painting can be seen in our schools) and instead he should, indeed we all should, be proud of how far our little museum has come over the last quarter-century.We look forward to all of the inspired evolution at our museum.Richard Betts and Mona EspositoAspen
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Mario Ruiz came to Aspen Highlands from Bariloche through the ski patrol exchange as part of the Sister Cities program last winter. He quickly ingrained himself with the Highlands patrol. Ruiz was killed July 27 in an avalanche while working at his home ski area. The Highlands patrol is raising funds for his family.