Art in the Dark!
Free Art in the Dark presentations occur throughout the school year, September through May, and introduce various historical and contemporary artists and themes while encouraging critical thinking skills and a deeper understanding of the curriculum being studied. Prior to each digital presentation, you will receive by email a Teachers Resource Guide including a summary of themes and objectives, a glossary of key vocabulary to be introduced, and suggested follow-up activities for student exploration. Due to the high volume of requests, we recommend that you sign up early.
MIDDLE SCHOOL PRESENTATIONS
Content Standard Connections: Visual Art / Social Studies / Science
Students observe and discuss the art and architecture of Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, India, Ancient China, Greece, and Rome. Students look for cultural similarities and differences between the diverse peoples studied.
Ancient Civilizations (Two-part option)
Part I – Prehistoric Art and Art of Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, and India.
Part II – Art of Ancient China, Greece, and the Roman Empire.
California Art and Science
Students study how California’s rich geologic history helped create its tremendous ecological diversity, as they observe and discuss California landscapes presented by various artists both past and present. They further discuss how artists present the impact of California’s landscape diversity on our human history and culture.
Renaissance and the Middle Ages
Students review medieval art of Europe, the Americas, Africa and Japan. They focus on the evolution of Renaissance art in Italy and Northern Europe with examples from Giotto, Brunelleschi, Donatello, da Vinci, Michelangelo, and van Eyck.
Renaissance and the Middle Ages (Two-part option)
Part I – Art and Architecture of the Middle Ages in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Japan.
Part II – Art of the Italian and Northern European Renaissance.
American Art, 1600-1900
Students view and discuss the art of the early European immigrants, the American Revolution, the young Republic, the Westward Movement, the Civil War and the late 19th-century art movements with examples from Peale, Copley, Stuart, Bierstadt, Catlin, Remington, Cassatt, Eakins, Homer.
HIGH SCHOOL PRESENTATIONS
Content Standard Connections: Visual Art / Social Studies / Languages
American Art, 1900 to Present
Students observe and interpret art from the early 1900â€™s to the 21st-century in an historical context, showing the development of Modernism in America through to the Contemporary Art trends of new media, cultural diversity, technology and globalism.
African-American Identity: Civil Rights Era to Contemporary American Society
Students analyze and interpret art works by African-American artists spanning pre-civil rights (Parks), The Spiral Collective (Bearden, Amos, Mayhew, Alston), Civil Rights during the 1950s and 60s (Lawrence, Catlett), and The Black Arts to Contemporary Artists (Olugebefola, Kara Walker, Saar, Bradford).
Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo: 20th-Century Mexican Artists
Students view Rivera’s murals/paintings and Kahlo’s self-portraits/paintings, learning how their lives intertwine and their styles differ. The connection between modern Mexico, the United States and Russia, is also discussed through the artworks of the two artists. Students look for the influences of cultural ideals and inventions on art.
East-West Connection: Japanese ukiyo-e and the French Impressionists
Students observe and discuss the impact of Northern Renaissance perspective on Japanese block print artists and the later Japanese artists influence on French impressionists and Post-Impressionists. They compare the artworks of Hokusai, Hiroshige, Monet, Degas, Cassatt, van Gogh and others.
MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL PRESENTATIONS
Content Standard Connections: Visual Art
NEW! The Language of Art: The Art Elements and Principles of Design
Students analyze and discuss artworks from both past and present to better understand artists evolving use of art elements and design principles. Different versions are available for Middle and High School.
Discovering Art Through Critical Thinking
Using critical thinking skills students perform an in-depth analysis of form and content on a small number of contemporary artworks. They compare and contrast themes and the use of art elements, style and varying media. Students interpret an artworks meaning, identify cultural and global significance while assessing how point of view and purpose shapes the content and style of the work(s).
Photography and the Modernists
Through studies of the photography and art of Stieglitz and Strand, and The Modernists (or Pioneers) O’Keeffe, Dove and Marin, students discover how these artists pushed the boundaries of what was the norm in American art of early 1900s.
Students observe and discuss a variety of artists traditional and modern methods of sculpture. They learn new vocabulary while examining the innovations and work of Alexander Calder through his wire and circus sculptures, mobiles and stabiles. Students study sculpture to interpret the meaning of the work and analyze each in terms of structure, subject matter, color, medium and/or shape.
Ceramics and California Funk Art
Students are introduced to the historical context surrounding the ceramics of California’s Funk Art movement of the 60’s. Sculpture from ceramic revolutionaries Voulkos, funk leader Arneson, and notable ceramicists like Gilhooly, VandenBerge, Shaw, Frey and Natsoulas are explored through open discussion.
Pablo Picasso and Cubism
Students explore Picasso’s and Braque’s artistic revolutionary change while expounding on the themes of the Spanish Civil War, WWII and world peace. Students discuss and analyze cubist paintings, sculptures, multiple self-portraits, ceramics and the iconic Les Demoiselles de Avignon and Guernica.
MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL PRESENTATIONS
Content Standard Connections: Visual Arts / Science / Math
NEW! STEM plus Art makes STEAM
Calculations are only one part of the equation; art is the coefficient. Students analyze how the elements of art and the principals of math and science are interwoven. They investigate how advancements are often the surprising unintended results of technical experimentation and artistic creativity.
Discovering New Media Art Through Critical Thinking
Using critical thinking skills students perform an in-depth analysis of the technology, form, and content for a small number of new media artworks. They compare and contrast artistic themes and use of technology while interpreting an artworks meaning and identifying the cultural and global significance of the work.
The Art and Science of Light: Leo Villareal (Bay Bridge Lights Artist)
Concepts introduced include the science of color in light, and the use of algorithms to create the computer generated light sculpture. The students examine the works of the Bay Bridge Lights artist Leo Villareal and the artistic influences that led to creation of his New Media art. They compare and contrast his light sculptures with other modern, traditional-media artworks.