Principal's Blog - 20 October 2016
Dear members of the Marcellin College family,
In my travels this year I was fortunate to visit galleries and museums containing some of the most significant and beautiful religious art in the world. I was also privileged to visit the Da Vinci Museum in Florence which celebrates the incredibly diverse gifts and talents of the great Leonardo Da Vinci. Da Vinci is known as the quintessential Renaissance man - A person who has broad intellectual interests and is accomplished in areas of both the arts and the sciences. Da Vinci was all these things and more. He was a great problem solver, a deep thinker, a skilled engineer and even, some may suggest, a passionate theologian. In his time people with the broad range of skills, knowledge and ability with which Leonardo was blessed were very rare. Perhaps mainly due to lack of opportunity or recognition.
Last Wednesday I witnessed the development and skill of a new group of budding Renaissance men at the opening of the 2016 VCE Visual Arts and Technology Exhibition. I was inspired by the breadth, quality, maturity and high order skills on display through the works of our students. Creative and imaginatively designed material technology pieces, technically advanced and complex systems and technology projects. Beautiful and thoughtfully produced photography, eye catching and cutting edge visual communication and design projects and stunning thought provoking art and studio art pieces were presented to the hundreds of students, staff, parents and families who came along to support our wonderfully talented young men.
As I viewed the various works, it struck me; these students are truly renaissance men. Men who possess a broad range of skills which they present to a high level. They are passionate about what they do, they speak with confidence and commitment about their work. They admire, encourage and support the work of the other and they have a strong set of beliefs and values which influence the methods and work ethic they exemplify in completing their work. It is not unusual for these artists and designers to also be great science students or sportsmen or musicians or people who have a strong commitment to social justice.
I have said often at Marcellin that we believe in the concept of multiple masculinities. That is, there are many ways to be a good man and many legitimate pathways to manhood. At Marcellin I am confident not only that our boys are provided with those multiple pathways but that through the dedication of their teachers and the support of their mates they have the license to have a go, to journey down that path and see where it takes them.
My impossible task on the night is always to choose one piece from all the VCE Visual Arts and Design Technology subject areas to be awarded the Principal’s Art prize. Now I do not claim to be an expert in Art and Design Technology. My criteria for choosing a piece for this prize is not based around a technical understanding of the standard of work but on the story behind the work, the journey, the mistakes, the “aha” moments and most importantly what it communicates about the young man who created the piece.
This year I choose for the Principal’s Art Prize for 2016 a piece of work entitled “Peep Hole” by Nicholas Peric. This piece provided a mature insight into Nick’s understanding of a part of the human condition. One which focused on the many varied faces we present outwardly whilst we struggle inwardly with identity and meaning.
I would like to thank the dedicated staff of the Visual Arts and Design Technology area for encouraging, supporting and inspiring our boys to be true Renaissance men. I would particularly like to thank Sean Kolednik - Visual Arts Coordinator and John Meagher - Technology Coordinator for their efforts in leading their departments and coordinating the exhibition.
Vale Tony Box
On behalf of the Marcellin College family I would like to offer my deepest sympathy and prayers to the Box family following the death of Tony Box. Tony was a teacher at Marcellin from 1969 to 1997. Over his twenty nine years at the College Tony developed a reputation as a highly skilled and dedicated teacher of Geography. I have spoken with many past students over the last few days and each has spoken with great affection and respect about Tony Box the teacher. In an era when discipline was harsh and the relationship between teacher and student a little more distant than it is today Tony saw the value in building strong respectful relationships with his students. Relationships founded on trust, integrity and a genuine desire to help young men to reach their full potential. Not only was Tony a skilled and committed teacher he was a man of genuine faith, a husband to Val for fifty eight years and an inspiring father of nine sons. What an outstanding role model to the young men of Marcellin College. As a man who said to educate young people we must love them and love them all equally I think St Marcellin Champagnat would definitely have been proud and happy to have Tony Box on his team.