SchoolArts Magazine

MAY-JUN 2014

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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32 SchoolArts TOWN Middle School Studio Lesson highlighters to add color to all parts of their city scenes. They colored the traced pieces to match the objects from which they were traced. Working in Three Dimensions Carefully using scissors or craft knives, students cut out their traced objects. Small rectangles of foam core board were cut smaller than the traced items with a craft knife (on top of a piece of scrap cardboard to protect the table surface). Students used white includes skyscrapers such as One Lib- erty Place and City Hall. I reminded students that the city is also home to churches, buses, trains, taxis, and bridges. Working in Two Dimensions After their ideas were in place, stu- dents used lines and shapes to create their own urban environments with pencil on white tag board until the paper was full. Next, we focused on fore- ground, middle ground, and background. Students chose at least five things that were closer to the viewer to make their compositions pop. Those five objects were traced with tracing paper, and after scrib- bling on the back of the tracing paper with dark pencil, they were retraced onto another half piece of tag board. I reminded students to pay careful attention when completing this step so that their objects were not acci- dentally flipped. Because these pieces were to be cut out, the paper could be turned and rotated to fit all of the pieces, so as not to waste paper. The entire image, traced objects, and added details, were retraced with fine-point permanent black mark- ers on the final artwork. Once the outlining was done, students used bold, bright fluorescent markers and A s a former art gallery employee, I draw much inspiration from the art- work that I most enjoyed handling, such as that of American Pop artist, James Rizzi, who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. According to Glenn O'Brian in an exhibition catalog, Rizzi was most famous for his three-dimensional artwork, "espe- cially large, elaborate prints and teeming anthropomor- phic cityscapes. His merry maxi- malism and delight in delirious detail and elabo- rate minutiae created a true art brand, a trademark style as recognizable as any in the world." Rizzi in the Artroom Rizzi's playful, three-dimensional cityscapes use line, shape, and color inventively and serve as great inspira- tion for middle-school students. After introducing Rizzo to my students, I instructed them to research examples of his work and come up with ideas for their own cityscapes. Our nearest big city is Philadelphia, so students researched actual sculptures and cityscapes there, including Alexander Calder's Jerusalem Stabile and Robert Indiana's Love. Students also looked for images of the iconic Philadelphia skyline, which Rizzi's playful, three- dimensional cityscapes use line, shape, and color inventively and serve as great inspiration for middle-school students. Emmy Conley My Kind of Above: Sam Covias's city is the back- drop for a city park with a fountain in Cityscape. B_pages_5_14.indd 32 3/20/14 3:46 PM

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