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ART BLOG!

March 26, 2021

Fiber artist Judith Scott wrapped keys, bicycle wheels, and a shopping cart with yarn, twine, and strips of fabric to make sculptures unlike any the world had seen before.  Isolated as a result of being institutionalized for most of her life due to Down syndrome and deafness, Scott began creating art at age forty-three, after being introduced to the Center Creative Growth in Berkeley California.  Our student teacher, Megan Smock, introduced first and second-grade students to Scott’s work as part of a unit called “Art Can Heal Us.” The students created small sculptures with cardboard and wire and explored the wrapping process using heavily textured yarns.

CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT JUDITH SCOTT


March 12, 2021

 

We just started our third trimester art electives.  Animation!

Students learned about contemporary commercial animator Yukai Du and completed three animation exercises, inspired by her work, using JS Paint.  They posted their finished work on a Padlet.  Next week they will combine the three techniques they learned to make their own animated shorts.

Click Here to See Our Animation Padlet



February 28, 2021

Our student teacher, Megan Smock, introduced Graphic Design to the Billboard Creative, a non-profit organization that rents billboard space and posts artwork by emerging artists, instead of advertisements.  The project raises the profile of the artists and brings art to the streets for people to see every day.  Students looked at some of the artworks featured on Billboard Creative’s website.  Then they created their own billboards using PIXLR E and Photofunia. 


February 5, 2021
The All School Art Show is virtual this year.  The show features artwork by Berna and Marie's students.  It went live today.  If you haven't seen it yet... Here it is!

Click Here to See the All School Art Show

February 2, 2021
Yukai Du is a contemporary commercial animator who makes work with a distinctive style using bold colors and stylized shapes.  Inspired by her work 5th and 6th grades used JS Paint, a free online drawing program to create their own animated gifs.  

Click here to see the 5th Grade's Animation

Click Here to see the 6th Grade's Animations

 

CLICK HERE TO LEARN ABOUT YUKAI DU AND HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN ANIMATIONS

CLICK HERE TO TRY JS PAINT

January 28, 2021
Seventh and Eighth grade Graphic Design students are learning about artists and designers of the Black Power Movement and contemporary artists who work with race and identity as they create their own work exploring these issues.  We began by looking at Barbara Jones-Hugo’s Unite and Relate to Our Heritage and Emory Douglas’ Don’t Support the Greedy, Support the Needy.  In creating their own work, the students thought about how we can create equity for all people.  Next, we learned about contemporary printmaker Juan Sanchez and sculptor and printmaker Elizabeth Catlett’s work Malcolm X Speaks for Us as we created digital artworks to honor our role models.  This week, graphic design students are looking at contemporary artist Shepard Fairy’s We The People series.  We will be making our own statements about identity and community.



January 13, 2021

The Quilt of Belonging was started by a Canadian artist named Esther Bryan.  She wanted to make a quilt that showed that everyone in Canada had a special place.  She learned that there was at least one person from every country in the world living in Canada.  She reached out to different community organizations and asked for volunteers to make quilt squares to tell the stories of their countries of origin.  There are 283 squares in the quilt, one for each group of indigenous peoples in Canada and one for every country.  The quilt has traveled the world as an ambassador of peace.  First grade students each made a square to represent themselves to make our quilt of Belonging.



December 15, 2020

Quilts can keep us warm.  Quilts can also hang on museum walls.  First grade students learned about quilts by the Gee’s Bend Quilters, Sarah Mary Taylor, and Rosie Lee Tompkins.  Inspired by their different ways of working, first grade students combined fabric and drawing to make their own quilts.


December 11, 2020

The Art of Student Teaching Show is an exhibition of artwork made by students with student teachers from Tyler School of Art’s Art Education Program.  Our Student Teacher, Vic, worked with us in the virtual art room here at Greene Street this fall.  She curated a beautiful show of our students' work including kimonos designed by first and second grades, puppets made by third and fourth grade students, and digital images by fifth and sixth grades.

Click Here to See the Art of Student Teaching Show

December 1, 2020

3rd and 4th Graders have been learning about Pennsylvania artists. For this project, we looked at puppeteer Cheryl Capezzuti, who creates massive puppets that parade around Pittsburgh. Students were given paper and popsicle sticks to make their puppets and individually created their own backgrounds. They then “paraded” across the screen or held a short puppet show bringing their artwork to life! Check out the puppet shows below!

Click Here to See the Puppet Parade
Click Here to Watch the Puppet Show


October 30, 2020

Gyyporama are animal hybrid pictures made as a hobby by Norwegian electronics engineer, Arne Olav Gurvin Fredriksen aka gyyp.  He photoshops different parts of real animals together to make his own strange creatures and they have gone viral on the internet.  Graphic Design students made their own imagined creatures and advanced their skills using selection and blending tools.



October 20, 2020
Adire cloth is a batik fabric made by creating designs with wax (or vegetable starch) which then acts as a resist to the deep blue indigo dye.  Fifth and sixth grade students learned about Adire cloth as part of their unit on African art.  The students made their own batik designs on paper with a choice of materials.  Each design was required to have a central image, a border design, and a corner motif.


Click here to see how you can make your own batik inspired designs




October 13, 2020

Legend has it that the first Kente weavers learned their craft by watching a spider weave its web.  Ghana is famous for its textiles including Kente which is hand-woven in long strips.  Fifth and sixth grades learned about the colors and symbols of Kente as part of a unit on African art.  The students practiced their weaving skills on small cardboard looms.

Click here to see how Kente is made


September 22, 2020
Hand held fans have a ling history in China.  In fact, many historians believe that the Chinese invented the fan.  The first fans were made with feathers.  Exquisitely painted fans have been cherished and given a special gifts for centuries.  First and second grade students learned about this tradition and the made their own accordion-style folded fans.


September 17, 2020

Graphic Design students began their journey by learning about pictograms, simple pictures that convey messages that are easily “read’ and understood.   We examined several road signs which use pictograms.  Then we learned how to use the shape and selection tools in PIXLR to make our own Funny Road Signs.

Click Here to Try PIXLR

Click here to learn how to make your own road sign



September 11, 2020

First week back!  First and second grades have begun a unit on art from China.  We began by learning about Chinese characters and traditional scroll paintings.  Third and fourth grades are learning all about art from Pennsylvania from hex signs to Philadelphia’s Magic Garden.  The art of Africa is inspiring fifth and sixth grades.  We began with ancient Egyptian wall paintings and will learn about tradition textiles and contemporary artists from many African countries. Finally, seventh and eighth grade Arts Electives students have embarked on a graphic design journey using PIXLR, a free online photo-editing program.

 
May 20, 2020
Famous art recreations have been blowing up on social media.  Here in the virtual art room, at Greene Street we decided to get in the game with the Famous Art Challenge!

Click here to see a video of all of our recreations
Click here to see the Video lesson

April 28, 2020

We have some exciting things happening in the Virtual Art Room.  Third and fourth grade students honored special people and pets with place settings inspired by Judy Chicago’s landmark feminist artwork The Dinner Party.  Using dinner wear from their cupboards with hand-made place cards, the students documented their work with photography.  They thought carefully about lighting and framing their work in the camera.

Click Here to see the Full Lesson

Click Here to see the Students’ Work

 

During the Great Depression, our federal government sponsored a massive poster campaign as part of the New Deal and Works Progress Association (WPA).  The WPA sponsored print shops and paid artists to design posters to encourage public health, work-place safety, the arts, civic pride, and later the war effort.  Fifth and sixth grade students used a free photo editing program, PIXLR to create posters to help people in our current times. 

Click Here to see the Full Lesson
Click Here to see the Students’ Work
Click Here to try PIXLR

 

April 2, 2020
The Virtual Art Room is happening!  Third and fourth graders learned about photographer Cindy Sherman as part of our unit on Contemporary Artists.  Their at-home assignment was to dress up in a costume and take have someone take their photo in a setting that matched their costume.




March 6, 2020

Sixth grade students created their own utopias as an interdisciplinary project in their language arts, science, and visual arts classes.  They began by reading The Giver, and City of Ember.  After discussing what makes a perfect society the students worked in small groups to design and conceptualize their own utopian societies, including how success is measured in their utopia.  In science class, the students learned about genetics and each group decided which genetic technologies they will allow in their utopia and which ones might be unethical.  In art class, the students learned about the work of architects who design for people’s and environmental well-being.  The groups designed homes or public spaces for their utopias and built small models in cardboard. Today the sixth grades presented their projects to their teachers and the seventh grades.


March 5, 2020

Our new Arts Elective, Painting and Drawing Intensive, began on Tuesday.  We got warmed up by practicing shading three-dimensional forms in our sketchbooks.  Then the students worked together to build structures with blocks and challenged themselves to draw those structures using perspective and shading to show form.



February 6, 2020

Inspired by Hindu sculptures, Shiva Nataraja and Dancing Ganesha, sixth grade students are making figurative sculpture.  I asked them to think about times when they feel happy and peaceful.  Students learned how to sculpt a basic figure and make a supportive base.  We engaged in this work as part of our unit on religious art.  They will add the finishing touches on Tuesday.



February 5, 2020
If you have a worry you can tell it to your worry doll before you go to sleep and in the morning your worry will be gone.  I don’t know if it true or not, but many people have told me it works.  Worry dolls are made in Guatemala often with scraps from weaving and embroidery.  First grade students made worry dolls today as part of unit of art traditions of Central and South America.


February 2, 2020
Everyone who attended the All School Art Show reception on Saturday was treated to amazing artwork, refreshments, mandala coloring, and Valentine card making.  Weren’t able to make it?  You can still stop by…  The exhibit will be up in the Armat Buildings through February 14th.  You will find first grade work in the lobby on the first floor, Pre-K and K on the second floor, and work by students second grade and up on the third floor.   


January 16, 2020
Teaching Associates took over the art room today for a TA Workshop, "An Introduction to Basic Art Supplies."  We had five stations with a different lesson and media at each.  Teachers could immerse themselves in one media or move around and try them all.  Pottery, printmaking, and batik were the favorites!



January 15, 2020
Inspired by Alebrijes  from Mexico City, first grade students used mixed media to create creatures the world has never seen before.  We are taking an art tour of Central and South America, finding each on the map as we go and learning about different traditions.





January 9, 2020
My article, "Don't Be Afraid of Religious Art: Thinking Through and Resources for Art Educators" was published in this month's Art Education: The Journal of the National Art Education Association.  You  can download the PDF below.