A traveling exhibition opened this morning at the House of Culture; the budding artists are students who sat the CSEC Exams. On display are the works that were submitted for the visual arts component of the regional exams over the past years. News Five’s Delahnie Bain had a look at the paintings, drawings and other items on display and files this report.

Delahnie Bain, Reporting

Each year students across the region produce exceptional pieces for the Visual Arts section of the CSEC exams. The Caribbean Examinations Council (C.X.C.) brought the annual exhibition, showcasing the best of those artworks, to Belize and it was officially opened at the House of Culture this morning.

Alan Genitty, Chairman, C.X.C. National Committee

Alan Genitty

“The C.X.C. Visual Arts exhibition was first started in 2003 and has been held since that time in a different C.X.C. participating territory each year. Consequently, this is the eighth exhibition. The exhibition will showcase the work produced over the past five years by students from sixteen Caribbean countries including Belize and will also include the visual arts pieces which won regional awards during that period. The visual arts pieces will be divided into several categories including drawing, imaginative composition, graphic design, ceramics, 3-dimensional design, surface decoration, print making, leather craft and fiber art.”

David Leacock

Aside from displaying the high standards of the exams, the exhibit also aims to encourage future CSEC students to consider visual arts as one of their subjects and also as a possible career choice.

David Leacock, Chief Executive Officer, Ministry of Education

“The arts has always been viewed as something you do on the side, as a hobby, that extra activity on the curriculum to enhance the curriculum; but not necessarily considered real learning. Indeed much research has been done on what art adds to the other subjects, for example, language, math and science.”

Alan Genitty

“Visual Arts is an integral part of our daily lives and often times we pass these without showing the appreciation we should. This exhibition will, therefore, give teachers, students and the general public a sample of the standard of art work produced by students in the region and help to promote the value and importance of visual arts in the curriculum.”

Cleveland Sam, C.X.C. Public Information Officer

“One just needs to look at the pieces in display here today and how differently and uniquely students from around the region express the same concept. No doubt, each student’s portrayal is based on his or her reality but what fascinates us the most is the students’ interpretation of the themes given on the examination paper.”

Patrick Faber, Minister of Education and Youth

Patrick Faber

“I will say this about the visual arts, but also the expressive and creative arts, that there is indeed the need for us in this society to value it more and an exhibition like the one being hosted here today is certainly a step in the forward direction.”

And according to Cleveland Sam, the C.X.C. Public Information Officer from Barbados, the council considers the arts to be as significant as any other academic subject area.

Cleveland Sam

Cleveland Sam

“C.X.C. is just as passionate about the arts, as we are about the so-called traditional subjects; the sciences, the humanities, mathematics and the technology based subjects. The council does not subscribe to the view that subjects such as visual arts are for students with lesser abilities. The council views this as a very archaic view of educational learning and sincerely hope that we as a region have long moved beyond this misguided perception of education. Visual arts is the only area in which we offer two awards; one for the best 2-dimensional work and one for the best 3-dimensional work. This, more than anything else to us, demonstrates the council’s commitment to the visual arts. As part of the prize for winning the award, each awardee receives a full scholarship to the University of the West Indies to study whatever discipline he or she desires.”

The public is welcomed to view the art pieces between nine a.m. and five p.m. all week long. Delahnie Bain for News Five.

Belize has won regional awards five times in the past, including two for visual arts.

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