historical and cultural contexts for 11th and 12th graders

Students will research nineteenth and twentieth century advertising. — Submitted photo

Instructional model

The teacher will provide reproductions of selected artworks from major historical periods and cultures, using these artworks as reference/starting points.

• Discuss functions, meanings and significance of the works as results of the influences of the culture, time and place of origin.

• Show how the functions, meanings and significance of the works can be interpreted from knowledge of the cultures and historical periods from which the works came.

• Show works that are similar conceptually, thematically and have similar imagery.

• Discuss the ways in which cultures adapt concepts, imagery and themes from other cultures as expressed in the visual arts.

• Relate works in the arts to geographic regions.

• Discuss artworks using appropriate vocabulary.

• Provide students with the names and basic information about Pennsylvania visual artists.

• View artworks and discuss how the philosophical beliefs of a society are manifested in its artworks.

1. The Greek concept of the ideal and the forms and proportions of the human figure in Greek sculpture.

2. Emphasis on the spirit and the representation of the human form in Byzantine murals and Medieval manuscript illustration.

3. Early 20th century technology and the Italian Futurism.

• View artworks from a variety of cultural groups in a given historical period and identify parallel and divergent traditions within and among cultural groups over several historical periods as they relate to works of art, for example, Egyptian Old, Middle and New Kingdoms, archaic and classical Greek sculpture.

• View artworks from two or more cultural groups that were made over several historical periods and identify parallel traditions among the cultural groups and changes in the traditions of a single cultural group over several historical periods as they are demonstrated in works of art.

Student learning activities

• Students will study examples of Greek and Roman mythology and sculpture. They will draw themselves as classical mythological figures. They will describe why they choose to picture themselves as their character and explain how this character shares common personality traits with them.

• Students will research and write a paper comparing the various purposes and functions of masks in, for example, African, Native American, Indian, Japanese and Mexican cultures. They will create a modern mask depicting a person of the 21st century using the aesthetic of a selected mask-making culture. Students write about how their mask reflects the modern world and the aesthetic of the chosen culture.

• Students will research nineteenth and twentieth century advertising. They will consider use of sexual and racial stereotyping and advertising design, including use of positive and negative space, typography and use of illustration and language.

Students will create a poster in which they will illustrate a current societal problem — such as access to health care, homelessness, neighborhood decay — and express their opinion through their design using visual imagery and text.

• Students will analyze clothing styles and accessories worn by men and women of different cultures and ages in their communities. They will make sketches of styles they like and develop them into fashion illustrations.

• Select a Pennsylvania artist; write a critical essay describing and analyzing the artist’s work.

For more information, visit philasd.org.

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