American Epics: Benton in 3-D

See how a Benton classic was recreated in this article from the Peabody Essex Museum. Benton’s clay maquette (a sculptors small preliminary model or sketch) for Cotton Weighing is too fragile to travel, but come see the real thing at the Milwaukee Art Museum!

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Inspiring Beauty: Be the Designer

Designers use croquis as the base for sketching garments. Ask students to select a garment in Inspiring Beauty that speaks to them, and using a croqui template, sketch it! Remind students that, when drawing a figure for fashion design or styling, it is not necessary to show details in the face, hands, or feet. Use… Read on

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Sew What?

Quilts are rich with tradition and are often associated with particular communities or parts of the country, such as Gee’s Bend, Alabama. Quilts have a variety of established patterns, but their design accommodates the addition of personal elements so that quilters can create quilts that tell personal stories and which reflect their individual tastes.  … Read on

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Walk This Way

Walking sticks, or canes, are a common, recognized form. They function as physical supports, status symbols, and prestige items, often with elaborately carved narratives and personal insignia. The walking sticks in this exhibition demonstrate a wide range of designs that can be used to create a simple functional object. Each artist has conveyed his or… Read on

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Look Into My Eyes

Artists who make portraits create an image in the likeness of a person (or animal)—capturing identifiable features, his or her personality, and the like. Objects within a portrait can provide visual clues about the individual featured in the artwork.             Ted Gordon  Choose two of Ted Gordon’s portraits and have… Read on

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Uncommon Folk Glossary

Assembling: The process of gathering and combining different materials to create a three-dimensional work of art, such as a sculpture. Assembling is an additive process. Assemblage: A 3-D work comprised of “found” objects that the artist has arranged in a particular way. Carving: The process of cutting or chipping into a mass of stone, wood, or other… Read on

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Exhibition Walkthrough

The unprecedented selection of paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, textiles, and furniture featured in this exhibition offers unexpected beauty, power, whimsy, and wonder. The authentically American artistic expression identified in the work of folk and self-taught artists in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries gave American art its own voice separate from the classical European… Read on

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Pattern and Repetition in Art

Have a group discussion with your students about what kinds of things they saw on their Museum visit to Accidental Genius. Generate a list of people, places, objects, colors, shapes, and words that stood out to them in the artworks they saw. (You may want to use the Image Gallery on the exhibition’s minisite http://mam.org/accidental-genius/gallery.php… Read on

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