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Copy of Portraying Power 2017-2018

Page history last edited by Susan Cormier 2 years ago

 

Portraying Power

 

TOUR LOGISTICS

Randolph

60 minutes in length

5 stops

 

 

DESCRIPTION

How do artists communicate power? In this tour, students will consider the ways in which art visually conveys information about power. Recommended for grades 3-8, this tour integrates the Common Core Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in History/Social Studies, as well as the North Carolina Social Studies Standards, with North Carolina Visual Arts standards.

 

OBJECTIVES

  • Students gain an understanding of how diverse cultures and peoples use art to convey social and political power.

  • Students gain confidence in developing personal interpretations about works of art and learn to recognize that people may view or interpret art differently

  • Students engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led), building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly

 

 

INTRODUCTION

Explain:

Welcome students. Introduce them to the Mint Museum.

Ask:

What do you know about art museums?

How do we act in a museum?

Explain:

Let them know that they will be spending the next hour exploring how artists create art, including portraits, plates, textiles, paintings, and masks that communicates ideas about power, identity, and status.

Ask:

What is power? What does it mean to have power? How can a work of art communicate power?

Explain:

Explain how looking closely and deeply helps you notice more things. Inform students that they will be looking at each work of art silently before discussing the work as a group. Ask them to listen to and consider other students viewpoints and to raise their hand if they have something to share. Encourage everyone to participate in the discussions.

Explain:

Let students know that throughout the tour they will be trying to create interpretations, or explain the meaning behind, works of art. Explain that interpretations of an artwork can grow and change as you continue to look and think more deeply. Acknowledge that people may have different interpretations of a picture and that is fine. Strengthen students’ understanding of the word interpretation by using it throughout the tour. For example, “Thank you Joey, for sharing with us your interpretation of this piece.”

 

 

 

 

OPTION TO CHOOSE CENSER OR TRIPOD PLATE

 

Work of Art: Censer with Butterfly and Floral Motifs

Goals:social status, symbols

Ask:

What is going on in this work of art?

What do you see that makes you say that?

What more can we see?

Explain:

This piece shows the social hierarchy in Teotihuacan culture. The portrait at the top may depict a ruler, symbolizing the power of the state. In the center of the Censer is a portrait of a warrior. Warriors played an important role in Teotihuacan society; they protected the interests of the city state. Below the warrior portrait is a depiction of a divining mirror. Mirrors are associated with holy men.

Ask:

What similarities do you see in between this piece and the plate?

 

 

 

 

 

 

OPTION TO CHOOSE CENSER OR TRIPOD PLATE

 

Work of Art: Tripod Plate with Diviner Gazing into a Mirror

Goals: social status, symbols

Ask:

What is going on in this picture?

What do you see that makes you say that?

What more can we see?

Explain:

In Maya art, power is expressed through symbols. A ruler, shaman, or diviner is shown sitting upon a low throne embellished with the skin of the jaguar, a sign of divine authority. He gazes into a pyrite mirror. To the ancient Maya, mirrors were magical portals into other realms. The man may be using the mirror to interpret or foretell future events. The two other individuals are most likely a nobleman and a servant or a prisoner.

Activity: Tableaux Vivant

Invite three students to take on the poses of the subjects in this piece. Have them freeze for a few seconds and guide their awareness to various parts of their body to make adjustments based on what they see. Break from the pose and look back at the plate. Discuss how the pose reveals clues to the subject’s identities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Work of Art: Portrait Bottle of an Elite Male w/ a Turban, Portrait Bottle of an Elite Male w/ a Turban, and Portrait Bottle of an Elite Male with a Deformed Face

Goals:portrait, naturalism

Explain:

A noun is a person, place, thing, or idea. An adjective is a word that describes a noun.

Ask:

What are some nouns you think of when you look at these works of art?

What are some adjectives you think of when you look at these works of art?

[Tip: record student answers to adjective question to use later]

 

Select a few adjectives that students offer and ask:

How did the artist create the effect of [insert adjective]?

Explain:

  • These are portraits of high ranking people from ancient Peru. This person (portrait of elite male with a turban) was most likely a powerful ruler or celebrated warrior. These bottles were given as rewards for special achievements. People would be buried with their portrait vessels, along with other objects of great wealth.

  • Multiples of individual portrait bottles have been found -some in the tombs of the middle class. This suggests that these portraits may have also been created to increase the influence and popularity of these “celebrity” figures.

Ask:

How are your achievements honored?

What can we notice about this portrait that might indicate this person’s status?

Why might people have been buried with these portrait vessels?

SUGGESTED FOR GRADES 6-12

Work of Art: Saint James The MoorSlayer (Santiago Matamoros)

Goals:colonialism, imperialism, religious conversion

Activity:Ten Times Two

  1. Look at the picture quietly for at least 30 seconds.

  2. List 10 words or phrases about any aspect of the picture.

  3. Repeat Steps 1 & 2. Look at the image again and try to list 10 more words or phrases to your list.

  4. Ask students to share their responses.

Ask:

What was the first thing you noticed?

What traits do these “characters” possess?

In what time and place do they exist?

What do you see that tells you about them?

Imagine you are in this setting. What sounds do you hear? Smells?

Explain:

  • According to legend, Saint James miraculously appears as a warrior on a white horse with a white banner and helps Spanish soldiers during their battles with the Moors.

  • When the Spanish conquered the Americas they imposed their religious beliefs on the native peoples. Spreading Christianity was a top priority for the Spaniards because they saw it as a way of pacifying and controlling the native people. St. James the Moor-slayer iconography was used by the Spanish to reinforce their political power, religion, and the political hierarchy.

Ask:

Why would the Spanish want to have power over indigenous people in the Americas? What did they have to gain?

 

SUGGESTED FOR GRADES 3-5

Ask:

What is going on in this picture?

What do you see that makes you say that?

What more can we see?

Explain:

  • According to legend, Saint James (the patron saint of Spain) miraculously appears as a warrior on a white horse with a white banner and helps Spanish soldiers during their battles with the Moors.

  • When the Spanish conquered the Americas they imposed their religious beliefs on the native peoples. Spreading Christianity was a top priority for the Spaniards because they saw it as a way of pacifying and controlling the native people. St. James the Moor-slayer was used by the Spanish to reinforce their political power, religion, and the political hierarchy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Work of Art: Royal Mask, surmounted by a Leopard, Bamileke Peoples, Cameroon

Goals: symbols, beadwork

Ask:

What do you see?

What does this work of art make you wonder?

How might the impact of this work change if you could fit it in your pocket? Why do you think the artist made it so large?

Let’s look around the room - what are the primary materials that you see? What is this piece made of? Why do you think the artist chose this material?

Explain:

The mask’s use of colored beads displayed the wealth of the Bamileke peoples and the leopard serves as a symbol of the king. In Cameroon, beads are associated with power and high status.

Ask:

Why would a king choose a leopard as his symbol?

What animal would you use to signify that you had lots of power?

Explain:

The leopard and the elephant ears evoke the power and force of the animals themselves as well as the kings or chiefs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

OPTION TO CHOOSE BUST OF ALEXANDER OR QUEEN CHARLOTTE& KING GEORGE

Work of Art: Bust of Alexander I of Russia by Wood & Caldwell, Enoch Wood (modeler)

Goals: portrait

Ask:

Take a moment to look closely. What do you notice?

Can we identify anything in this work of art that could indicate that this person is powerful or important?

Do you notice any similarities to the portraits of Queen Charlotte and King George?

Explain:

This life-size molded bust portrays the Russian czar in military uniform, complete with sash and epaulets. He wears two medals: the cross of the Order of Saint George, the most important military order in Russia, and the star of the Order of the Garter, the highest order of chivalry in England.

The bust commemorates Alexander’s role in Napoleon’s disastrous 1812 invasion of Russia and the French army’s surrender in Paris 1814.

 

 

 

 

 

 

OPTION TO CHOOSE BUST OF ALEXANDER OR QUEEN CHARLOTTE& KING GEORGE

Work of Art: Queen Charlotteand King George IIIby Allan Ramsay

Goals: portrait, symbolism

Ask:

Take a moment to look closely. What do you notice?

How are these portraits similar or different from representations of leaders today? (share images of U.S. presidents, Queen Elizabeth II)

Can you identify any symbols of power in the royal coronation portraits? How about in these photographs of leaders today?

Do you notice any similarities to the bust of Alexander I?

Explain:

The ermine robes the King and Queen are wearing are a symbol of royalty in Europe. Hanging from the King’s collar is a St. George pendant, which was given to honor exemplary service in the diplomatic field. Both the King and the Queen stand on a platform - raising them above others as not only the political, but also the moral and spiritual leaders of their subjects.

Explain:

There are many copies of these portraits. The portraits were displayed throughout Europe and the American colonies.

Ask:

Why would the King and Queen want their portraits displayed all over the world?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WRAP-UP

Ask:

Did you have a favorite work of art? Why?

How can works of art display power?

What do artists do to make works of art seem powerful and important?

Explain:

Thank students for participating and encourage them to return to the Museum with their families.

12 | Art and Power

 

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