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Lesson Plans


Meaning/size/intention

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
marcia m eaton (marciameaton)
Tue, 2 Mar 1999 05:41:27 -0500


The small statues from the Mexican exhibit are a reminder that size of
artworks is often dictated by function. Rings, for example, can't be so
big that they can't be worn----there is even a limit to the size of crowns
although sometimes this seems to be exceeded! For nomadic cultures,
carvings that must be carried from place to place have to remain of a
portable size---and weight, so this will restrict the materials that can be
used as well as the size.
So here is another way in which function, and hence intention, connect up
with size. Even in absence of knowledge about specific artistic
intentions, size and material are properties of works that may give
evidence about the meaning. (Stay tuned for the next walk through Trajan's
Forum when Ron and I will talk about art and evidence.) You might ask your
students what messages are in the medium that creators choose----messages
that are separable in some cases from the specific meanings of the
creators.
And speaking of Mt. Rushmore: We have been hearing over here about the
proposals to add Ronald Reagan's visage to that work. This seems to me a
controversy that students might find very interesting. I have to say that
even though I find Mt.Rushmore a little gimmicky I hate the idea of
"spoiling" it by adding another face---or at least this one! Marcia