Inspiring Beauty: Design a Magazine

As a class or in small groups, review various magazine covers, such as Ebony, which was highlighted in the Inspiring Beauty exhibition. Ask students to identify the magazine’s key components, for instance, the masthead (or title), cover photo, cover lines (highlighting the stories inside), and the dateline (with the issue date and price). Make a… Read on

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Of Heaven and Earth: Pick a Piece

Some of the paintings featured in the Of Heaven and Earth exhibition were initially displayed in churches and other sacred places. Others would be included in the homes of wealthy arts patrons. After viewing the exhibition, imagine selecting one painting to take for yourself. Consider the following prompts to assist in the discussion: Which painting… Read on

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Siginificant Experiences

Discussion- Reference a point in Kandinsky’s life, such as when he moved back to Russia, when he started working at the Bauhaus, or when his property was confiscated during World War I. What emotions might Kandinsky have felt at this time? Does his work reflect these emotions? Use the text panels in the exhibition to… Read on

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It’s Tradition

Document family traditions by interviewing grandparents, uncles, and aunts to find out about family history. Listen to family stories, learn about grandparents’ hobbies, hear about their childhood songs and games, and investigate special holidays and family events. Create a class scrapbook or blog post that features stories and pictures from the past. Consider including recipes… Read on

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Some Assemblage Required

Assemblage is a 3-D work comprised of “found” objects that the artist has arranged in a particular way. These objects can be organic or man-made. One thing to consider about assemblage is the design. Whereas assemblage is typically three-dimensional, collage is typically two-dimensional. Both art forms are considered eclectic in nature and composition. The meanings of… 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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Uncommon Folk Resources

Internet Resources American Folk Art Museum  Folk Art Society of America Folk Life Archive From Windmills to Whirligigs Possum Trot Roadside Art Online: Environments  Sculpture Background   Literature Resources American Folk Art for Kids by Richard Panchyk  Art from Her Heart: Folk Artist Clementine Hunter by Kathy Whitehead and Shane W. Evans Fish Eyes by… Read on

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Creating Community

A lesson plan involving folk art provides a great opportunity to explore the many aspects of community—and to strengthen school-community connections. The prompts below will facilitate a class discussion as you introduce concepts around folk art to your students. Explore one or all of the prompts in preparation for your visit to the Museum—and for… Read on

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Interviewer-Interviewee

Traditional Portraits Some of Thomas Sully’s earliest recorded portraits are his now-lost images of members of the Park Theatre in New York in various roles. When Sully had returned in 1810 to Philadelphia from a nine-month trip to England, he announced his artistic ambitions through a series of extraordinary theatrical portraits, arranged by patrons and… Read on

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