The Art of Giving Art
Donor hopes art helps Trine students solve problems
Angola High School junior Ted Pacult, right, hangs a reproduction of Vincent Van Gogh's "Irises" in Trine's Library and Information Services.
Angola High School junior Ted Pacult feels strongly about the impact of art on creative thinking, and wants to give Trine University students the opportunity to absorb that energy.
Pacult, of Lake James, donated 10 high quality reproductions of paintings by Dutch master Vincent Van Gogh to hang in Trine University's Library and Resource Services in the University Center.
While they create a stunning visual effect, their presence in the library has a deeper meaning for their giver. After viewing a CNBC interview with the organization Creative Coalition, he believes that exposure to the paintings could help Trine engineering and other students solve problems more creatively. He's calling it the Artistic Solutions Project.
"A spokesman for the arts said students who are exposed to art get better grades, score better on tests, and are better leaders," he said. "I thought of our country's problems with energy and infrastructure, which will require creativity and ingenuity to solve. Trine is an engineering school with talented students at the forefront of their fields. I thought maybe there is a way to combine arts exposure and their proven abilities to generate even more creativity for these problems."
Trine is not the first school to benefit from Pacult family generosity and vision. Fremont Community Schools received reproductions of the works of Impressionist masters to stimulate creativity in their students in the late 1990s. "Our mom majored in art history at U.C. Berkeley, and we've been fortunate to see plenty of artwork," Ted said. He chose Van Gogh for Trine "because the response to it is intense, and you can't walk by it without feeling yourself thinking differently and using different parts of your brain."
Brushstrokes, a Toronto company, reproduced the paintings through a scanning and laser technique, combined with artist-applied brush strokes, to create an incredible likeness to the original. "This company got an original Monet from the Kansas City museum, and they reproduced it using their technology. They gave the original and copy back to the curator, and 30 days later he could not tell the difference," Pacult said.
"I hope the years of exposure to this art will bring something special to Trine and help benefit their highly regarded students in creatively solving problems like infrastructure or alternative energy," Ted said.