Video games, Facebook, cable television, movies, cartoons, advertising, the Internet all on your phone combine to make this the most visual culture that has ever existed. This trend is intensifying. A kid can get lost in all that kaliedoscopic swirl.
Trinity's Art Education program helps future teachers to orient children to their visual environment in a way that will allow them to respond knowledgeably and selectively to the media images that surround them. In fact, in our culture, reading images has become an essential part of literacy. If our children don't understand the ways in which images shape their perceptions of the world, they be vulnerable easily manipulated visual messaging. Further, if the church does not keep up with visual culture it will be unable to communicate effectively to its own, much less to the culture God calls us to serve. In short, we need a contemporary program in art education...from a Christian perspective.
Art educators not only orient children to visual culture, they build a knowledgable, supportive community which serves as a critical foundation for Christian artists and designers whose calling it is to help shape this very visual culture. As Calvin Seerveld, one of Trinity's founding faculty members and the scholar for whom Trinity's gallery is named, said, "Unless artists have a knowledgable, supportive community on which to build their efforts, Christian artistic practice will wither away." Knowledgeable Christians in art education are indispensable to the church and the wider culture.