During the two-year International Baccalaureate (IB) program, students in IB Art prepare a portfolio of work that serves as part of their IB art grade. Their work is student directed. Each student artist chooses different areas of focus that often address cultural, environmental, of socio-political contexts, or purely artistic aspects of the world in which we live. They explore a variety of media and techniques including: painting, photography, collage, sculpture, video, and installation art and prepare a portfolio of their work. College students often don’t get to participate in a public exhibition until after they finish their university studies. However, students at ACS are fortunate enough to have the opportunity to exhibit their work in public, at the Beirut Souks, while in high school.
In March, eight ACS students exhibited their work over a two-day period in the Beirut Souks. Yasmine Baddoura is an aspiring architecture student who came to ACS two years ago. She has taken art classes most of her life and said that “Art helps push boundaries.” For her what made the exhibition interesting “Was the lighting and space.” Geny Chekerdjian, another senior, was planning on a career in architecture as well but is now undecided between studying Law or Medicine in the US. Although she had some pieces of work at home, which were not in the show, she said her favorite piece in the show was “A gigantic sculpture hung on a wall with two discs that rotated, creating an optical illusion.” Maurice Salem commented that “You don't need to be a great artist to be in IB art.” He loves to paint and it was a previous art teacher that encouraged him to pursue studies in architecture.
IB Art Teacher, Cailin O’Connor, explains that “IB art students investigate theoretical and conceptual approaches to making art through sustained investigation, which adds a depth of understanding and reflection not often seen in artwork of this age group.”