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Lesson Plans


A&E.A

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Janice L Hayes (jlhayes)
Fri, 2 Oct 1998 22:36:58 -0700 (MST)


Conversations About Teaching Contemporary Ecological Art:

Inquiry questions:

-How can we involve kids in the art of their community that has a tie to
the environment?

-How do artists and educators understand contemporary ecological art?

-How has your community addressed ecological issues, traditionally and in
recent times?

In Tucson there is a lot of public art that involves the
environment. A piece that I bike by everyday that always catches my
attention is at the base of A mountain. This sculpture is a blue wall, and
on the wall are tiles with found objects and fossils inlayed into the
tiles. There is also a big yellow lizard attached to the wall. Lizards are
a desert animal that are common to Tucson. Another public artwork that
involves lizards are two huge tiled lizards, in a medium of a street on
the Southwest side of Tucson. These lizards also have tiles that have
found objects inlayed into them, and are multi-colored. There tongues are
sticking out as if about to eat some desert critter.
These works are just two examples of public art in Tucson that
involves the environment. To get students aware of these works I could
either do a slide presentation of the work, or take a walking or biking
tour around Tucson to see all the works first hand. I believe first hand
experiences with the works would be the most beneficial for a group of
students if feasible for the group. By looking at the works and being in
the environment in which it was placed would be important to discuss how
the artwork relates to the area. Does it communicate to the community a
positive or negative message about the environment?
There has been a lot in the newspapers lately about issues with
the pigmy owl here. To have kids cut out newspaper articles that deal with
issues in their community about the environment would make them more aware
of all the issues that are linked to the environment. The pigmy owl is in
the news here because the Amphi school district wants to build a new high
school where the only two Pigmy owls live. There are also issues about
admissions testing, the Saguaro cactus, and the contaminated site next to
the airport that may leak into the ground water table. There are not any
artworks yet that involve these issues as far as I am aware of if they do
come up it would be a good inclusion with the newspaper articles the
students had been cutting out.