Famous Iowan Grant Wood, our "Artist of the Month" for February (b. 2/13/1891), became a springboard for an introduction to Regionalism in Art History and an inspiration for a drawing based on his iconic "American Gothic". The students not only enjoyed putting their own spin on the famous work but also learned a bit about the "Gothic arch", the basis for its title.
Second grade is currently using another arch- the "Roman arch"- in a mixed media painting of the ancient Roman aqueducts. The class is employing 1-point perspective and foreground, middle ground and background in the design of this piece.
First grade is being introduced to ancient Greece in Art History and is creating a still- life collage of Greek pottery utilizing Greek designs.
Fifth grade is thrilled to have finally begun their large, monochromatic self-portraits. They use acrylics on a large canvas and use values of one color only - a color they choose that is partial to them. These paintings are always a neat way to end their "tenure" at GFS, and the younger students love to follow the progress of their older friends!
Another fun thing we did in Art History was called "Art Detectives". I introduced this by quizzing the students on how, when they write, words are used to get a reader's attention. We then revisited the elements that artists use to catch our eye and lead us to the subject. Each child was subsequently showed a painting by a famous artist and -using a telescoping pointer- asked to show their classmates how the artist "gets our attention"! I felt this would be an 'empowerment tool' when they visit museums with their families.
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