I haven’t had a class of undergrads yet, but I can imagine this is the perfect place to call to task those who have thought, “I could do that” while at an art museum. It’s the time for them to put the grease on their elbows. This applies to ourselves as artists too.
However, here’s a pretty decent explanation for what that thought actually means. And implications for us as teachers and practicing artists.
As teachers, we could glean some exercises from this to address technique vs. concept.
We could challenge students to tackle a particular medium, and reach towards a result like the “masters”. For example, having students paint a square in oil paint to match the smoothness and lines of a Mondrian.
We could challenge students to explore a concept that is very personal, and to go out and find objects to express that concept.
As artists, I believe that if we do feel there is a dearth in technique we can either imagine or research what concept the artist is exploring.