>I am a Graduate student working with a 5th grade art class. I was
>interested in creating a lesson plan dealing with artists who use music to
>inspire their work. I was wondering if anyone could give me any ideas,
>specifically names of artists for the art history part of the lesson.
The Russian artist, Wassilj Kandinski, created many paintings based on
Romaire Bearden is a great suggestion also. I think Grace Hartigan and
Stuart Davis also worked in response to music.
With regard to ideas to teach the lesson, here is a senario of how I might
teach this lesson. I would not show these or any other artists at the
beginning of the lesson - too suggestive, not enough problem solving.
However, I do want them to learn about the art history.
1. I find that children understand the concept of working from music much
better when I have them hear passages from two very different contrasting
styles of music than when only one style is used. It is easier to get the
idea by comparison than from a single auditory example.
2. I use some preliminary practice experiences involving very short
passages of music and warm up exercise with line motion for melody, line
boldness/lightness for fortissimo/pianissimo, repetition for rhythm, high
key/low key value for representing fullness of sound, fast/slow comparison,
soft/hard comparisons, and so on.
3. I do not demonstrate any of this. I don't need the warm up, they do.
I have them listen to comparisons and each student does it as warm up
stuff. Sometime I start with non-music sounds of several rattle noises and
tapping where they can't see what is making the noise (teacher hides hands
in a box while making rattle sounds) works well for the rendition of a
varity of textures. Texture charts can be small squares filled with marks.
Each sqaure repesents a different texture.
4. The best selections of each child's warm up stuff can become the
material which is developed into a more serious interpretive work.
5. If the class (or the teacher) is not too shy they can sing, hum, and
beat out the rhythm of the finished works.
6. Finally, at the end, I would show the visuals (slides, reproductions,
computer files of images, web pages, or overheads) and have the class
speculate about the type of music used by the artist. Possibly some of
them could research it. Maybe, some could act out the role of the artist
in some way. Or, the teacher can give some information as well.
This just scratches the surface of the possibilities. I've seen
working to music be a trivial or frustrating activity, I've seen it be
derivative copy work, and I've seen it promote real thinking like that of
an artist and a writer/performer of music.
>Marvin Bartel, Ed. D., Chair, Art Dept
>Goshen College, Goshen, IN 46526
>phone 219-533-0171 Studio
>phone 219-535-7592 College
>http://www.goshen.edu (for Goshen College homepage)
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