Like many of us, I spent several years working for a piece of paper that officially declares me an artist (7 years altogether), but is this really what defines me as a creative?
In business I see the utilitarian value of a masters degree, because I’d really like the people who handle our hard-earned money to be licensed and to know how finance and money work, and I bet nobody would want to hear their doctor say: “Well you know, I never really made it through medical school, but don’t worry, I’ll do your colonoscopy anyway.” But bums aside, does this (expensive) piece of paper really deliver in the way that a banking licence or MD does, or is it but a side product of the communal wish to unify the school system?
Seeing that the current system for delivering knowledge was build by capitalists who wished for nothing more than a compliant, malleable workforce to fill up their factories, the whole point of such a system was to diminish avid creative endeavours and focus more on boxing up peoples abstract interests into shapes that the system could understand, sort and use. And in doing so produced, among many unwanted side effects, the current creative crisis, more commonly refereed to as ones midlife crisis. But if we focus only on the school system’s effects on artistry and its teaching (and not counting the few schools who made a stand against such box-making efforts, especially in the 60s and 70s) I see quite a few conundrums.
Sure, we can grade people on the their skill level; if Sally paints more realistically than Joshua, then by the merits embodied by hyperrealism, Sally should be graded higher than Josh. But is this really how art works? My lines are straighter then yours, my ovals are more plump and my colour palate is more to taste? And god forbid we put another artist in the mix, who only does abstractions. How does one compare them then?
Sure there is a good side of going to a famous art academy, if nothing else the lifelong connections and friendships that are formed there are priceless. But apart from these, does the current school system really deliver on its promises to artists as it does to economists and biologists? And I don’t mean to say just learn everything from Youtube videos and call it a day, my doubts are merely focused on the amount of knowledge and skill one can get from paying for art school compared to how much one gets, when enrolling into as similarly famous business school instead?