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Lesson Plans: Comprehensive Reading: Art Appreciation

Comprehensive Reading: Art Appreciation
A Look at Deborah Butterfield

Rolene AuClaire,  Sheppard Middle School, San Jose, California

During the course of the year/semester students will study several artists and produce art work in the artists' style.  Students are initially taught what is expected of them in terms of research work and project writing. Then they are expected to do all subsequent research and writing on their own. Class time is reserved for discussion about selected artists and their work, learning techniques for creating art in the manner of these selected artists, and criticism of student work.

Students will ...

  1. Become knowledgeable about the artists (style, canvas, life, history, etc.).

  2. Perform research on the artists using multiple sources (web, books, museums, etc.).

  3. Write research reports about the artists.  (Report Guidelines-html)

  4. Learn techniques specific to the artists.

  5. Complete works of art in the style and/or methodology of the artist being studied.

Example -- Deborah Butterfield

In this example, we will use the work of contemporary sculptor, Deborah Butterfield, who is famous for her sculptures of mares. 

  • Since the artists work is one mares, students were taught, in detail, how to draw a horse.

  • Students discuss their findings and specific works of art by the artist.

  • Students learn techniques for completing a work of art in the tradition of the artist being studied.

  • Their final assignment was to create a horse sculpture of any material measuring at least 18 inches in any one direction. They could ask for help but that they must document that assistance.

  • Preliminary designs for specific works of art by the students  are developed with teacher assistance.

  • Final works of art are completed outside of class.

  • Final works of art are discussed and displayed.

Sample - Student Work


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