Thanks to all the families who visited our artful market place during the Stage III Family Night! All the clay pieces are sorted by homeroom and ready to go home. The pieces are fragile, so I'm hoping parents can pick them up - perhaps during conferences. Bags are available on the tables. Thanks! Here are a few examples of our Ancient Roman inspired egg tempera paintings, clay pieces and mural art:
Clara Y.'s egg tempera painting features a beautiful pear.
Frida and Diego: A Stage III Elective Class
This class is inspired by the art and lives of these two great Mexican artists, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Instead of creating mimetic art, our conversations have centered around the ways they approached painting - their inspirations. One of the most distinctive aspects of Frida's portraits and Diego's easel paintings is the predominance of flowers. And, were are all pretty tired of winter, so it was fun to fill the art room with lots of greenery and blooms! We began by planning our still life paintings on paper. Next, we blocked our compositions in with neutral paint on large canvas panels. Then, we spent classes mixing acrylics and painting layers of color. Some of use decided to add chalk pastel to our still life paintings. They will be on display on the bulletin board in the hallway of the Steward Building.
A field trip to the DIA is being planned for this class. Our focus will be the Detroit Industry Murals in the Rivera Court. I had a professional development grant to study the Rivera Court, and I created guides for the children. We will also peruse and enjoy other galleries in the DIA. Due to the adult content, we will not visit the current show featuring Rivera and Kahlo in Detroit.
The First Buds of Spring: Class Art
We searched on the playground, and I searched in my gardens, to find the first buds of spring. After collecting twigs from several trees, bushes and a few early flowers from bulbs, we began our study of these beautifully delicate and detailed objects from nature. First, we took a very thoughtful look at these objects. Next, we arranged them on paper towels and drew thumbnail sketches. During each of these steps, the children were encouraged to truly "see" - an experience which is transferable to many areas of the curriculum. After studying the thumbnail sketches, we drew contours of our compositions using charcoal pencils on tonal paper. This is experience requires creative as well as critical thinking. Slowing down the process seems to bring out both intellectual and creative strengths of the children. And, we are reminded that new life is beginning again!