At the day care centre the children enjoyed painting
more than any other activity. They were the two to
four year old children of employees of a large
Beverly Johnston was an artist herself and she had the
responsibility of keeping everyone happy. The parents
and the children. She had attended school for art and
had specialised in traditional art; the classics,
paintings done hundreds of years ago. She didn't like
modern art. She thought that the children's art was
better than the modern art at art galleries and even
better than many of the modern paintings at the
Beverly Johnston gave the children all the paint they
wanted to use on all the canvas boards that they
wanted. The children made a mess. Beverly thought that
their paintings were excellent. She framed the
pictures and took them to an art gallery.
To Beverly Johnston modern art looked like something a
two year had done. She wanted to prove her point. She
was going to put her day-care children's paintings
into an art gallery. She decided not to tell anyone
what she was doing. She wondered what would happen if
people believed she had done them, instead of the two
and three-year olds.
The first gallery she went to said they were
excellent. They wanted to do a show as soon as
possible. They even made another artist cancel his
show so that this new art work could be shown to the
public right away.
On opening night there was a large crowd of important
people. There were newspaper reporters and television
crews to report the art gallery's show. The next day
the world was told about this new and important art.
Art galleries from around the world wanted to show
children do more and more pictures. Or what the
children saw as paintings. The pictures were really
different coloured blobs on canvas, usually smeared
together. Some paintings were large - some small. She
framed every picture. She did more and more shows.
All the money that was made from the art shows was put
into a bank account for the day-care centre's
children. After all it was just a bit of fun to her. A
way to get even with the kind of art she never liked.
Beverly Johnston kept her secret for a year. She did
shows around the country and three overseas. She was
on the cover of several major magazines and was
announced as the most important new artist of the
decade. All the while she was laughing.
Finally she let out the secret. She called a press
conference. On national television with international
pickup to countries around the world she made the
announcement that no one really wanted to hear; that
she, Beverly Johnston, did not do the art that was
being called, "the best new art of the decade", it was
being done by two and three year olds.
Many artists from all over the world were very upset.
Especially the ones who did modern art - and tried to
imitate 'her' work. The artists who did traditional
paintings laughed at the whole situation. They
understood what Beverly Johnston was really doing.
The children at the day-care centre all received the
money from the art sales and they had the best
Christmas ever - using all the money for presents.
Beverly Johnston lived happily ever-after forever.
© terrell Neuage Wednesday, 28 February 2001