It seems to me that Art League and Art Associations are becoming the death of art in local communities. They tend to be selective of who they except into their webs, but not always in a good way. Many of them tend to select art instructors that have been part of their leagues or local artists that are part of their inner circle, teaching and passing on what they have learned in their little stores with little to no understanding of the art world as a whole. Mind you that this is not true of all art leagues, but true enough of the ones I have come across that it makes me wonder if the real problem with people understanding art today is not mostly the fault of these so called art leagues. It is a wonder that most serious or well established artists have little to nothing to do with them. Could it be that they see them as too basic, or maybe that they see them as doing more harm than good.
You might wonder what I am talking about. Well I was at a local art league not long ago, and the demonstrating artist there that night was talking about a basic or what we call dead pallet for painting. At first I thought that he might be talking about a basic pallet, but when he said it consisted of only 4 colors I figured Dead Pallet. He mentioned that they pallet is made of the colors Red, Yellow, Blue and White, the truth is that there is no color blue in a dead pallet. The colors for a dead pallet are Terra Rose, Orchard Yellow, Titanium White and Ivory Black. If he was talking of a basic pallet he still missed the color black. While we may not use black directly on the canvas as much, black and white are used to saturate and desaturate colors, without them we would not be able to do this. So leaving the color black out of the pallet makes no sense. He did not seem to know this, and laughed about a former teacher of his at the league being unable to teach him while he bragged about being good at his job.
This is just one instant, but there are more that I have seen. If this is the kind of things that art leagues are teaching is it any wonder that the understanding and appreciation for art has gone down?