Sunday, November 21, 2010

Art Center Announces Spring Schedule

Usually, the Indianapolis Art Center posts its schedule online a few days (or weeks) before the printed catalog is sent. So, I was surprised when the catalog arrived in the mail yesterday. There's still no mention of the spring schedule on the center's home page, which seems odd, since registration opens Dec. 1.

In the catalog, you'll find the usual mix of classes in ceramics, glass, sculpture, drawing and painting, jewelry, photography and more. If you're looking for serious artistic study, the Art Center is still the best option in town.

And yet, I confess that I'm disappointed in the schedule (and have been for the previous few semesters, too). Perhaps my impression is incorrect, but the Art Center seems to offer fewer weekend workshops and "light" class options these days -- the very things that might attract a new student. I used to circle a class on every page and have to make hard choices about which classes to take. The number of classes I want to take next spring = zero.

Perhaps the Art Center is choosing to focus on more serious, long-term students. Obviously, the center is doing a great job with that population. But, when it comes to classes, I'm usually neither serious nor long-term. I need to find a new place for random learning experiences that don't require investing in a studio full of equipment.

Another complaint: I detest the way the catalog is organized. Classes are listed based on the day they are offered (Mondays, Tuesdays, etc.). So, if you want to find a 15-week intermediate drawing class, for example, you have to read the entire section. Why not organize classes by length (seven weeks vs. 15 weeks) or by skill level within each category? I do not say, "I want to take a class on Tuesdays." I say, "I want to take an intermediate class on PMC." Oh, look, there it is on Wednesdays. If there were a 15-week class on the same topic, it might be listed on an entirely different page. That makes absolutely no sense.

As it stands, I'll be handing off the catalog to a friend of mine, who is very much enjoying her seven-week painting class this semester. She is serious about improving her painting skills, so I'm sure she'll find something in the spring catalog to interest her. Meanwhile, I'll be searching for other options.

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