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Re: [teacherartexchange] Creativity In Art Assignments

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From: Darren High (darren_high_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Thu Jun 30 2005 - 19:29:56 PDT


The holidays are part of our culture, but art projects
depicting seasonal elements associated with holidays
(Santa Claus, Easter Bunny, etc.) then become
essential holiday decorations and are not something
that would be displayed throughout the year. Most of
us view Christmas as an important part of our culture,
but I doubt any of us have paintings of Santa Claus up
year around.

You can use those holidays as springboards to art that
uses the concepts of celebrations to create artwork
that would not seem seasonal. For example, a work
involving the concept of peace for Christmas, a
nightmare/fear for Halloween, love for Valentine's
Day, rebirth for Easter, freedom for Black History
Month, etc. For St. Patrick's Day you could have them
do a monochromatic painting using only green, black,
and white to depict whatever subject matter they
choose.

--- "Diane C. Gregory" <dianegregory@grandecom.net>
wrote:

> Interesting discussion on creativity.
>
> What about looking at seasonal or holiday objects as
> artifacts of culture. I do
> know that in the past, art educators have usually
> thought of holiday art as
> trivial and trite, without much merit. However, in
> more recent times, some
> have advocated looking at holidays as examples of
> tradition, celebration, which
> have an important place in the lives of children.
> Laura Chapman in her book
> Approaches to Art in Education advocated looking at
> holidays, traditions and
> celebrations as a way to look at art and culture.
> Maybe we have been
> overlooking an important opportunity to understand
> our own culture and the
> culture of others. Taking a value pluralistic
> stance, might be appropriate
> when looking at cultural artifacts. The entire
> discussion really centers
> around what the purpose of an education in art is.
> It seems there are
> differing assumptions about what that is or what
> that entails. It is
> fascinating to watch the changes unfold over time.
>
> Diane
> --
> Dr. Diane C. Gregory
> Director, Undergraduate & Graduate
> Studies in Art Education
> Texas Woman's University
> Denton, TX 76204
> dgregory@mail.twu.edu
> 940-898-2540
>
>
> Quoting Darren High <darren_high@yahoo.com>:
>
> > My problem with creating artwork tightly
> associated
> > with holidays is that the art then simply becomes
> a
> > seasonal decoration. Most people do not keep
> artwork
> > depicting Santa Claus, The Easter Bunny, or jack
> > o'lanterns on display throughout the year. That
> stuff
> > seems appropriate only a few weeks out of the
> year.
> >
> > I think you could have projects that sort of tie
> into
> > seasonal events, but would also be able to be
> > displayed throughout the year. For example,
> Easter
> > has it's pre-Christian roots in Pagan celebrations
> of
> > fertility and rebirth symbolized by spring, so an
> > assignment involving flowers would seem to fit
> nicely
> > without seeming too seasonal. For Christmas, they
> > could create images of a favorite toys which could
> > possibly tie into a pop art lesson. For Halloween
> > they could create a picture based on a nightmare
> or
> > something they fear (such as spiders, snakes,
> sharks,
> > etc.).
> >
> > --- david gran <dsgran@yahoo.com> wrote:
> >
> > > My question would be to ask what value is in
> making
> > > art-products that have a predestination. If a
> > > student's input doesn't go beyond color-choice,
> what
> > > does that suggest to the student about the
> process
> > > of
> > > art-making in general? In other words, when we
> teach
> > > children, I think we can agree that fostering a
> > > sense
> > > individual expression is a significant goal. To
> me,
> > > creating something that is "pretty" is less so -
> > > especially if the student is learning that art
> is
> > > about putting things together instead of making
> > > different kinds of aesthetic choices.
> > >
> > > The issue of multiculturalism in art education
> is a
> > > different animal, and I don't think that a good
> > > sense
> > > of it can necessarily be accomplished by simply
> > > making
> > > different holiday projects. For example, I
> don't
> > > think making menorahs will really teach students
> > > anything about Judiasm. Multiculturalism, to
> me, is
> > > more about learning about different cultures
> (and
> > > specifically for our profession through art).
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > --- Darren High <darren_high@yahoo.com> wrote:
> > >
> > > > A lot of the art lessons I have read online
> are
> > > > assembly line type projects that require a
> > > specific
> > > > subject matter created in a specific way.
> > > >
> > > > I kind of like the project involving making
> fish
> > > out
> > > > of plastic 2 liter bottles, but I think there
> are
> > > > enough varieties and colors of fish that the
> all
> > > of
> > > > the projects would look different. It's not
> the
> > > > same
> > > > as everone making shamrocks or Santa Claus in
> the
> > > > same
> > > > way.
> > > >
> > > > I'm not sure about the idea of making projects
> > > > related
> > > > to specific religions in art. I think one
> could
> > > > argue
> > > > that if you don't belong to that religion then
> it
> > > is
> > > > a
> > > > multicultural project, but there would be a
> need
> > > to
> > > > represent a variety of religions and cultures
> > > > throughout the year and not just Christian
> > > holidays.
> > > >
> > > > Would St. Valentine's Day and St. Patrick's
> Day be
> > > > considered Christian holidays since both are
> named
> > > > for
> > > > Christian saints?
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > --- david gran <dsgran@yahoo.com> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > That lesson seems doubly flawed to me -
> aside
> > > from
> > > > > the
> > > > > whole 'assembly line art' that you mention,
> > > > there's
> > > > > also the whole issue of using the art
> classroom
> > > to
> > > > > make holiday art which can be both
> trivializing
> > > to
> > > > > artmaking in general, and marginalizing to
> > > > students
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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