Though many artists begin the art making process with a subject, some begin by gathering materials. They may find these materials on the side of the street, at a local market, or while taking a walk in the woods.
For this unit, Artists Collect & Synthesize, we asked students to collect objects and then synthesize them into something new. First, we looked at artists who collect things to make art. Artists included Lenka Clayton. One example of her work is titled 43 Wishes which is a collection of 43 coins retrieved from a fountain. Another example is a piece titled 63 Objects Taken from my Son's Mouth which, as the title infers, is a collection of items Lenka Clayton removed from her son’s mouth when he was between the ages of 8 and 15 months old.
We also looked at artists who synthesize their collections such as Angela Haseltine Pozzi. She is the founder of Washed Ashore, an organization that creates giant sculptures of sea creatures using only the plastic found on the beach. The mission of Washed Ashore is to bring awareness to the world's growing plastic pollution problem through their art.
We kicked off the unit with a one day challenge. Small teams of students searched the school campus for items which they collected in a bag. When the groups returned with their collection of found items, we asked them to synthesize the stuff collected in their bag into a work of art.
After the one day challenge, students were given the week's concept objective. Create a work of art by collecting and synthesizing stuff. Here are some of the results.
Art of South B, South Brunswick High School, NC
Art of South B
Artwork by students at
Teaching for Artistic Behavior (TAB) is a student-directed art education pedagogy that directs students to think and work as artists.
Making Artists picks up where The Open Art Room left off, covering issues and situations choice teachers encounter as they design their program.
The Open Art Room provides a student-centered approach to art instruction that is inspirational, practical, and classroom-tested.
Click Here to read the March SchoolArts Article, Student-Directed Answers to Five Frequently Ask Questions
Click Here to Read the April SchoolArts Magazine Article Tracking Student Progress with the Burn Book!
Click Here to Read the February SchoolArts Article, Build A Dynamic Art Program with Modular Teaching!