SchoolArts Magazine

AUG-SEP 2008

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Page 29 of 71

All Levels Sharing a World Vision "Each journey begins with a sketchbook: my personal interactive documentation of time and place. Then, in my Ashland, Oregon studio, the sketches evolve as large acrylic paintings. Between myth and reality, I extend the fleeting moment into a larger framework, a vision of worldwide communities, cultures, spiritual and physical survival." —Betty LaDuke Janet Payne W ith her "head, hand, and heart," artist Betty LaDuke impacts our world as an artist, educator, and humanitarian. As a retired professor of art emeritus of Southern Oregon University in Ashland, Oregon, LaDuke has pursued her art as a mission with passion and generosity of spirit. Art has been LaDuke's conduit for connecting to the world and using the power of the arts to educate the world about cultural challenges and triumphs. Part of her story began when she was a student from the Bronx with a sketchbook habit developed while attending the High School of Museum and Art in New York City. One of her first assignments was to sketch objects from her home or neighborhood. By sketching New York's 28 diverse ethnic markets, neighborhoods, and people, she developed her identity as a compassionate observer and recorder of people. This sketchbook habit continued as she began her formal art training at the University of Denver; the Cleveland Institute of Art; the Art Institute in San Miguel, Mexico; and Los Angeles State College. This diverse training served to ignite a spark in LaDuke that impacted her teaching career at Southern Oregon University. While at Southern Oregon University, she was anxious to challenge herself and her students with a broader world view, spurring the start of her annual travel adventures. Always the teacher, LaDuke immersed herself in the travel experience, recording observations and engaging children in producing their own art. LaDuke's travels are reflected through the volumes of sketchbooks that appear on neatly organized shelves throughout her home studio. These sketchbooks are filled with images of people as they relate to the land, community, and local traditions and represent her onsite experiences and serve as the catalyst for her large acrylic paintings on canvas. About Betty LaDuke As the sketchbook volumes multiplied, LaDuke learned to organize her paintings, etchings, and drawings into circulating cultural themes that were seen beyond Oregon art centers, university art galleries, and museums across the U.S. In addition, LaDuke has published several books and videos on her travels and the artwork that evolved from her travels.

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