Thursday, November 17, 2011

WiPs: Broken Window Painting

The style of cubism is a mainstay in the 2D art curriculum but after teaching it only one way for a couple of years now I changed it up. I wanted to raise the bar on student skillsets and encourage students to take a more thought provoking perspective while creating artwork that is more visually complex. I'm so delighted to say that it's going very well so far!!

I doubled the timeline for this project but I'm thinking it might need double time in a half. The students have all been working diligently and I don't want them to feel pressed to rush and ruin what could otherwise be really beautiful paintings. They are using the acrylic medium on canvas 11x14 canvas panels and for many of them this is their first painting a major piece of artwork.

I'm loving this project because the length of it is really giving them something that teaches them on multiple dimensions. They have learned about the intensive planning that is required before just rushing right to the point of putting paint to canvas.  They are learning about how much time they actually need once they are painting despite how effortless some of the examples (from Paul Klee) looked when we were gathering our visually inspirations.

Another thing? This project is providing great pauses of time of which we can have profound discussions where art is a vehicle for much bigger ideas. We've talked about how the broken effect on the foreground of each of their paintings doesn't have to mar the beauty of the underlying design but it actually contributes to it. Since this is a private faith-based learning environment, this idea of brokenness definitely echos of what scripture tells them and how our own brokenness is definitely pivotal and sometimes essential for us to see the beauty and glory of Christ and His provisions.

The students have definitely been challenged by this project but it's exciting to see how excited they are to get in here not just on time but BEFORE time for class in order to be able to get to painting. I know art is a welcome opportunity of respite for them and it's good to see their investment creating not only positive learning experiences but also beautiful artwork.

The goal was to have these done just in the nick of time for Thanksgiving but I might very well give them one more week so they are sure to tend to all of their brokenness in just the right way that they can fully appreciate the beauty that is yielded.

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