The History of Art Education Time Line 1980-1989
Decades of art education history in contexts of schooling and artworlds

  • The Corning Museum of Glass opens in New York. Teachers were able to take their students to the museum to observe glass pieces. Visitors are also shown glass blowing demonstrations, something very few high schools have the facilities to teach on their own.
  • MTV aired its first music video on national television. This had a huge impact on the visual culture and popular culture. MTV not only surpassed, and replaced the ever-popular radio; it change the music industry by showing the emotions of the artists with their work. MTV introduced and continues to make the world aware of a wide variety of music genres, social problems, political issues, racial relations, and fashion designs.
  • The National Museum of Women in the Arts is a private, non-profit museum in Washington D.C., incorporated in December. It brings recognition to the achievements of women artists of all periods and nationalities. They were exhibited, preserved, acquired, and researched by women, and by educating the public concerning their accomplishments. The museum offers a wide variety of education programs for children, teens, adults, and teachers. Designed around three themes--Discovering Women Artists, Women in Performance, and Women and Creativity--the public programs expand knowledge of women artists.
  • Between 1981 and 1984 Steve Kahn had a number of galleries, and museum shows of his work in Europe. Sometimes Kahn traveled abroad to install a show or have a workshop. Kahn took a lot of trains, and while in motions, made photographs of the moving landscape. He had a little 35MM Minx camera. Kahn didn't bother looking into the viewfinder. With images coming at him so quickly, there was no time to frame anything. There was just time to decide whether or not the approaching image was, indeed, worth capturing.
  • The Joy of Painting television series, starring Bob Ross, first episode was aired in 1983. During the show, the soft-spoken Ross taught his audience an easy technique of painting that included how to make "happy" clouds and "happy" little trees. Although, these paintings were not considered outstanding artistic creations they did inspire people who were reluctant to pick up a paintbrush. Now, this series is brodcasted around the globe. Unfortunetaly, Bob Ross died in 1995.
  • Crayola created an art education program for elementary school students called DREAM-MAKERS. It is an Internet site that teachers can go to in order to find lesson plans, and ideas for creative projects. They can even print out letters to send home to the parents of students explaining the importance of art education. Some of the ideas expressed by the program are the importance of creativity by students, the great value of visual education, and the importance of exhibiting student work. It is no surprise then, that they also sponsor a variety of exhibitions in the United States each year.
  • The AIDS virus is discovered, as a virus of primarily gay men. This discovery has an impact on the personal lives,and the careers of many artists. Keith Haring and David Wojnarowicz were two artist who were diagnosed with AIDS. Thet both spendt much of their careers in a creative response to the AIDS crisis. They viewed their art as an activist statement promoting societial awareness to the polictical, health, and cultural problems associated with the virus. Haring was part of the graffiti art movement. His work can be seen today in the form of posters, greeting cards, and t-shirts. Wojnarowicz also did street graffiti, as well as performance pieces, and media installations in urban areas. Both Haring and Wojnarowicz died from the virus in the 1990's.
  • The groundbreaking comic book series Watchmen is released. Using literary elements such as foreshadowing, multilayered meanings and touching character development, this series proved that comics had the ability to be more than simply commercial products geared toward children. The series is so well regarded and admired that it is studied at countless universities (including Penn State) around the country.
  • Pop artist Andy Warhol, died at age 58 after being admitted to New York Hospital for a routine gall bladder operation. Warhal transformed contemporary art. He juxtaposed upbeat icons of consumers society with images of death and disasion. Warhall used his mass production techniques to challenge preconcieved notions about the nature of art.
  • Comic Books are first aided by computers. Marvel Comics releases "the state of the art" comic book series Shatter. Today, most mainstream comics are colored on computer. In fact, some artists render their pages in pencil, and then feed them into a computer which inks, colors and letters them.
  • Andre Serano creates his most well known piece Piss Christ. This piece causes great controversy and is used as an arguing point against the National Endowment for the Arts.
  • After Andres Serrano's exhibition of Piss Christ, the U.S. National Endowment of the Arts was attacked by conservative politians, by commentator Patrick Buchanan and the Reverend Donald Wildman. The attack was initiated by Rev. Wildman who accused the NEA of using taxpayers' money in a wasteful manner. The American Family Association, of which Wildman was president, lobbied for Congress to approve a new regulation for the NEA so that it "shall clearly indicate that obscenity is without artistic merit, is not protected speech, and shall not be funded."