The world begins on Australia

At least, in my art class it does. We are exploring art around the world this year, and Australia seemed like a great place to start, and not just because it is the home of one of the oldest people groups in the world. Aboriginal art incorporates a lot of what I like to start with: line and shape. After a powerpoint introducing the country, its people, and its animals, we’ll look at line and shape and distinguish between a dot and circle. Aboriginal art is an excellent start for introducing how environment inspires art, and as an example of how art is an overflow of the spirit of a person. So much art throughout the world is linked to and a product of worship, and this is no exception. Also, it introduces art as storytelling, which kids really connect with.

Kindergarten’s model is simple, and will also introduce pimary colors.

kinder model

First/Second grade will review primary colors, but incorporate the contour line of the Australian animal of their choice. I am debating whether, so early in the year, to give them templates, or just show models of animal silhouettes and let them work out their own pastel contour. Probably the latter.

Third/Fourth grade adds brown. But the key in their art is an expanded lesson on the symbolism in the art, and encouragement to tell their own story, Australian style. They will mark their story with their hand. My model’s story tells of a kangaroo fleeing his watering hole because of a grassfire.

3rd/4th model

Fifth/Sixth grade will be inspired by contemporary artists, using the dot art style to depict some of the iconic Australian countryside, very reminiscently of pointillism. They can mix their own colors from the primaries, plus white and brown. My model, with room to demonstrate:

5th/6th model

Student work can be found here and here.

My inspiration, by aboriginal artist Danny Eastwood:

Danny's Uluru

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1 Comment

Filed under Art, Fifth/Sixth Grade, First/Second Grade, Kindergarten, Seventh/Eighth Grade, Teaching, Third/Fourth Grade

One response to “The world begins on Australia

  1. Pingback: The Australian Mystery | Pamela UnPlugged: the Art of Life

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