January 8, 2017
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Art appreciation is something we spend very little time exploring during our school year. With all the core subjects we try to accomplish every day, art just seems to constantly be put on the back burner. Because this is the case, we are going to make a dedicated effort to study a few artists the during remainder of the school year.
We started with Pablo Picasso because I find him to be an interesting artist with uniquely distinctive periods in his works. The Library has several good books about Picasso that highlight his life and personality along with showcasing some of his works of art. Three that we like the best are Just Behave, Pablo Picasso! by Jonah Winter, 100 Pablo Picassos by Violet Lemay, and Picasso by Mike Venezia.
Picasso had four distinctive periods during his career: the Blue Period, Rose Period, African Influence Period, and, probably the most popular, Cubism Period. With each period, we are doing artwork “walks,” which are open dialogue and conversation about popular works from each period. A few artwork “walk” questions I ask to get the conversations going are:
- Describe what you see in the artwork.
- What do you like or dislike about the piece?
- How does it make you feel?
- How do you think Picasso was feeling when he created the work?
- Is there something unusual or unique about the artwork?
- Do you think there is a story behind the work?
- Is Picasso trying to say something with this piece?
To finish our segment on Picasso, we are going to try and replicate a couple of his famous paintings and finally create our own Picasso-inspired masterpieces. Do you teach art appreciation during your school year? If so, do you have any fun tips or inspiration to share?