David Smith has found a way to contribute to the “greater good” during the recent shelter-in-place order due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Smith and his wife, Dale, own and operate Smith Studio and Gallery in downtown Geneseo.
He has launched a vlog called “Kid’s Korner” on the studio Face book page, which is Smith Studio and Gallery.
“It’s been a thrice-weekly art activity - Monday, Wednesday and Friday - for kids to do at home,” he said. “I am aiming this mostly toward a younger audience for kids in kindergarten through fifth grade, and sometimes the activity is appropriate for four and five-year-olds.”
Smith keeps the activity to include common creative materials that most people would have in their homes, and to keep the vlog to five to seven minutes, he said…”These special art activities have received good reaction form as far away as Australia.”
He is a Distinguished Member of the Illinois Art Education Association and said, “This is something I can contribute to the greater community during these unusual times.” The “unusual times” have prompted a wide variety of offerings from creative individuals.
In a recent conversation Smith had with Logan Hamilton, Geneseo Middle School art teacher, Smith said, “I know that he has been working from home. Seems that most art teachers in the state are working with Zoom or some format that is not available free to wider audience. This is a difficult way to teach, a new way to teach.”
A fellow-artist friend of Smith’s, Pat Bereskin of Bereskin Gallery & Art Academy in Davenport, also offers a free daily art event, “Tangle,” which is aimed at older students and adults and can be found on Face book page Bereskin Gallery & Art Academy. The events are streamed at 9 a.m. daily, but can be seen online at any time.
Smith also shared that the Figge Art Museum in downtown Davenport has joined the free offerings during the shelter-in-place order. Laura Wriedt, of the Figge, posted a book reading about the artist Wassily Kandinsky and the reading was followed by an art activity, Smith said.
“These free educational offerings are created by local people and have come into existence because of the new life situation in which we find ourselves,” he said. “They have been offered to the community because we all hope to give what we can.”