Special Awards In Pictures

As I look around in our nation, from the urban to the rural areas, I notice that all the materials that Liberians are using are arts work designed by people of foreign lands/culture.

I have been pondering over this issue for a protracted period of time as to why a nation so blessed with natural resources is not capable to turn these resources into finished materials? With rivers, lagoons etc. flowing all through the land, why are we not able to build modern boat to use our waters in order to ease the transportation bottlenecks by said means? Why are many young Liberians not becoming inventors and craftsmen? Why are we not improving in our material culture?
At the National Museum of Liberia, there is availability of arts work done by Liberian folk artists. From these works, I have come to understand that Liberia has a very rich folk arts, but the question keeps ringing in my mind is why Liberia not improving in her material culture. Why is the division of labor so poor in Liberia? Why are many young Liberians not visiting the national to discover their past?
After pondering over these issues and many more, I have come to the conclusion that the lack of ‘visual arts education’ has brought a problem to Africa oldest nation. This is also due to the fact that many Liberians, including the institution clothed with authority to craft education policies, have ignored this aspect of education. The classification of the education by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as mess, in my calculation, is due to lack of visual artist, literary artist, performing artist, etc.
With all said and done, the President did not say who created or how the mess was created and what can be done to change the mess. As President, she made a political statement leaving out the process through which more students can be encourage to enroll into vocational and technical schools, how economists and other professionals can to be artistically informed.
Since all objects made by man are work of visual arts, than I think visual arts which is the mother of all careers should be added to the curriculum in all Liberian schools, both public and private, from elementary to high school as well as university level. Art is one of the many ways children and young people express what they see, know, feel, or imagine. Art is also a subject for study- a legacy of visual images from around the world, past and present.
Until Liberia can make the subject art a branch of learning in her school system, her vision for 2030 remains a day dream or a joke.

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