SchoolArts Magazine

October 2018

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Page 42 of 66

O ne day I brought in a box of old books that were going to be thrown away by the library. One curious student picked up a book of Hiberno-Saxon art that featured pictures of the interlacing decoration from such great works as the Book of Kells and the Lindisfarne Gospels. As he looked at the book, I could tell he was fascinated by the intricate design and detailed artisan- ship of the works. When he finally put E A R L Y C H I L D H O O D IN THE ZONE OF CREATION John Purcell the book down, several other students wanted to look at it, as did I. I remembered seeing several of those works when I traveled to Ire - land and England. Yet, looking at them again in the book, they became a springboard for inspiration. Inspiration from Frank Stella I recalled a lecture in my college years about how American artist Frank Stella had been inspired by the same interlacing decoration. Yet, Stella did not let it sit on a page in a book where a magnifying glass is almost needed to see the complexities of its design. Instead, he blew it up into brightly colored paintings that cover large spans of wall space. These paint- ings became known as the Protractor series because of the constant pres- ence of the angular measuring device. Ideas started to form for an art proj- ect with the class. I showed students Cristina Valdez. 38 OCTOBER 2018 SchoolArts

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