With all of the budget cuts happening in schools in the U.S., the first program that’s cut in many schools is art. There’s a huge focus on ensuring that students can perform well in mathematics and English, and many people forget how important art really is. Without art, buildings would all look the same, no house would be decorated, and our clothes would look plain. Today, I’m here to say that I’m completely against the fact that art is being taken out of schools. If you take a look at the photos posted in this blog, I’m sure you will agree with me.
On Sunday, the cohort and I had the opportunity to go to La Isla Negra, Valparaiso, and Viña del Mar. La Isla Negra is where one of Pablo Neruda’s (Chilean author) houses are located. The inside of his house was filled with many figurines and paintings. Although some of them seemed a bit strange to me, you could tell that these forms of art are what made the house. Without them, the house would be very bland and you wouldn’t be able to tell his personality. I appreciate the fact that he took the time to decorate his house according to how he felt and what he liked. One day, I hope to do the same with my house.
Later we went to Valparaiso, which is a huge city like Santiago. This is also the part of the country where Congress is. Sunday was El día del Patrimonio, which is their Heritage Day. People filled the streets and there were vendors everywhere. Many buildings and monuments were also open for the public to see and visit. We were able to see a little part of Valparaiso where there was a ton of graffiti. It was some of the prettiest artwork I’ve ever seen in my life; it seemed as if people really took their time to develop this artwork. After viewing these, I really don’t see how people could be against graffiti. People are able to express how they feel through creating this, and without this artwork all throughout the streets I don’t believe this part of the town would be as beautiful as it is. After Valpraiso, we went to Viña del Mar and watched the sunset. All in all, it was a beautiful day filled with a lot to see.
Even though street art seems to be very important to the Chileans, it appears that art is also important to children. I went to Colegio Lorenzo Sazie yesterday (a local school), and one of the teachers showed my colleagues and I a collection of all of the art work that students had done. I couldn´t believe how talented some of these students were. Many students struggle with expressing themselves, but these students have the opportunity to express themselves through art. If this is what Chilean students find an interest in, I´m sure students in the U.S. wouldn´t like if art was taken away from them.
I´m no artist, and I don´t think I will ever be one. However, I appreciate the beauty of it. People enjoy creating art, and it helps people express what´s going on in their mind. Think about what life would be like without art. Everything would be bland and boring. Now imagine what would happen if we take art out of our schools. What would the future society look like? I have no idea, but I definitely don’t want to find out. I will always be in favor of keeping art in our schools, and I hope you will too.
¡Bienvenidos! My name is Bryanna Hill and I'm an Elementary Education major with a concentration in Spanish at SUNY Buffalo State. This will be my second experience abroad with the school, and I'm excited to see what Santiago, Chile has in store for me. I enjoy laughing, dancing, and trying new things.