Teaching with Contemporary Art

Tosa Mitsuoki, "Autumn Maples with Poem Slips", c.1675. Image: artic.edu

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Home Away

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Home Away

I wonder what it means when you feel at home somewhere else? Six years ago I spent a few weeks during the month of July at the School of the …

art21-educators-2012-13

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Year Four Art21 Educators | Carl Andersen and Craig Newsom

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Year Four Art21 Educators | Carl Andersen and Craig Newsom

Next up in our Year Four Art21 Educators series, we introduce Carl Anderson and Craig Newsom, who teach in Minneapolis and Carlinville, Illinois, respectively.

Richard Long, "A LIne Made By Walking", 1967. Image: nationalgalleries.org

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Long Walk

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Long Walk

I see Richard Long’s “A Line Made By Walking” as a metaphor for teaching. He makes visible his process, which is quietly relentless. He creates order through a meditative act. He provides focus. He makes us see something quite simple in a completely new way.

Ai Weiwei, Surveillance Camera, 2006. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Teaching with Change

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Teaching with Change

Last week I presented a Season 6 Access screening of the Change episode featuring Catherine Opie, El Anatsui and Ai Weiwei. During the screening I made some notes to share …

art21-s6-eduguide-layout

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Test Driving the New Season 6 Educators’ Guide

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Test Driving the New Season 6 Educators’ Guide

The new Season 6 educators’ guide is now available as a quick and easy downloadable PDF. As we celebrate the broadcast of our new season, I thought this week might be a good time to highlight some of what the new guide has to offer educators interested in teaching with contemporary art.

Celebrating persistence... Image: bleachereport.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Persistence and Patience Paying Off

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Persistence and Patience Paying Off

It’s probably a good time for our semi-annual hockey post that highlights some bizarre (or perhaps, pertinent?) parallel between the New York Rangers and teaching with contemporary art. This post is devoted to persistence.

The four Marx Bros... Image: noodleinahaystack.blogspot.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Teaching with Contemporary Art Turns Four

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Teaching with Contemporary Art Turns Four

No sooner are we celebrating our upcoming fourth year with Art21 Educators as I am reminded that the Teaching with Contemporary Art column also turns four this week. Looks like I’ll be playing the fourth horse in the fourth race this weekend. Last year I celebrated by looking back over the first three years but today I’d like to just look back over the past twelve months because it’s been quite a ride. Here are some highlights since last spring.

Zoe Strauss, "Mattress Flip", 2001. Image: pdnphotooftheday.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Ten Years…… Right Between the Eyes: Zoe Strauss at the Philadelphia Museum

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Ten Years…… Right Between the Eyes: Zoe Strauss at the Philadelphia Museum

Every once in a blue moon you get surprised by an exhibit that takes your breath away. Kiki Smith did it to me in 2006 and last year Glenn Ligon …

number4

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Year 4 Art21 Educators Announced!

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Year 4 Art21 Educators Announced!

First of all, I cannot believe that we are approaching year FOUR of the Art21 Educators program. It seems like a very short time ago we were just hatching this …

Robert Adams, "Adams County, Colorado," 1973  Courtesy Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco and Matthew Marks Gallery, New York

Teaching with Contemporary Art

ART21 Exclusive

Ambiguity and Teaching with the Photography Robert Adams

Teaching with Contemporary Art

ART21 Exclusive

Ambiguity and Teaching with the Photography Robert Adams

Teaching with and sharing Robert Adams’ photography with students can allow for a broader understanding of what makes a great picture.

“Sky Laun­dry” by Ge­of­frey Hen­dricks   Image: dartbeat.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Art21 Meets Fluxus

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Art21 Meets Fluxus

This past Saturday I had the pleasure of working with the University of Michigan Museum of Art to present “Art21 Meets Fluxus”. Over thirty teachers from a variety of disciplines came together to learn more about working with Art21 education materials and to brainstorm ways of bringing this smart and provocative exhibition, titled Fluxus and the Essential Questions of Life, into their classrooms.

Cai Guo-Qiang, "Drawing for Transient Rainbow," 2003 Collection Museum of Modern Art, New York

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Words and Art

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Words and Art

I had no idea what to write about this week, so I asked my son, Paul…. He’s six. “Write about words and art,” he said. “Why?” I asked. “Because words …

Jimmy Fallon as Neil and Bruce as Bruce circa 1985

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Sexy and I Know It

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Sexy and I Know It

Jimmy Fallon, in case you haven’t already seen this, does one hell of a Neil Young impression.

assume vivid astro focus, "assume vivid astro focus VII", 2003. Courtesy Deitch Projects, New York

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Balancing Skill-Building and the Formation of Ideas

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Balancing Skill-Building and the Formation of Ideas

Finding a balance between teaching specific skills and techniques with teaching about how to explore process in order to form and pursue ideas is not easy. If you teach in a culture (or department, or school, or district, or university…) that emphasizes skills and techniques as the “meat” of the curriculum, it’s probably a good idea to begin talking about the kinds of skills that everyone really considers “essential”.

El Anatsui, "Group Photo", 1987. Courtesy the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Slow Turn

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Slow Turn

On Sunday, the National Art Education Association wrapped up their 65th conference here in New York City and more than ever I am encouraged by the state of affairs at NAEA. In just the past four years, as Art21 has brought contemporary artists such as Mark Bradford, Carrie Mae Weems, Mark Dion and most recently, Janine Antoni and Oliver Herring, the change is noticeable.

Janine Antoni. Image: arts.columbia.edu

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Janine Antoni and Getting Set for NAEA: Part Two

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Janine Antoni and Getting Set for NAEA: Part Two

Part two of my recent interview with Janine Antoni in advance of her keynote address and workshop at the National Art Education Association’s annual conference here in New York from March 1-4.

Janine Antoni, "Lick and Lather" (detail), 1993

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Janine Antoni and Getting Set for NAEA: Part One

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Janine Antoni and Getting Set for NAEA: Part One

This week’s column features a brand, new interview with Janine Antoni in advance of her upcoming keynote address and workshop at the National Art Education Association’s annual conference on March 1st here in New York City.

Jethro Gillespie, his son and some friends at a TASK event

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Art21 Educators: Jethro Gillespie and Jack Watson

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Art21 Educators: Jethro Gillespie and Jack Watson

Over the past few weeks I’ve thoroughly enjoyed talking and e-mailing with two more of our current Art21 Educators, Jethro Gillespie and Jack Watson. Jethro teaches Studio Art, 3D Design, Ceramics and other art courses at Maple Mountain High School in Utah while Jack teaches 2D Art and Art History at Chapel High School in North Carolina. Both look for ways to better engage their classes on a consistent basis and avoid “window dressing” projects that may look pretty but aren’t necessarily about very much…

Fabulous designer Iris Apfel.  Image: blog.mawi.co.uk

Teaching with Contemporary Art

So, Three Thousand Art Educators Walk Into a Room….

Teaching with Contemporary Art

So, Three Thousand Art Educators Walk Into a Room….

From March 1st through March 4th the National Art Education Association holds their annual conference right here in New York City. Over 3,000 art educators from all levels have the opportunity to attend hundreds upon hundreds of workshops offered by colleagues from close to everywhere across the country.
Here at Art21, we have a few very special things planned….

Tim Hawkinson, "Sherpa". Image: booooooom.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Transformation and Distortion

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Transformation and Distortion

Two of my classes begin a new unit where students are asked to work with the themes of distortion and transformation. Especially for teens, the idea of transformation- of the self, objects, symbols, even the meaning of words- is an attractive proposal. Add the multiple implications associated with distortion and it becomes the kind of field day you really want in a classroom.

Students in Maureen Hergott's class transform the space

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Teaching with Contemporary Art in the Elementary Classroom

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Teaching with Contemporary Art in the Elementary Classroom

Julia CopperSmith and Maureen Hergott made some important points in last week’s interview and this week we take the opportunity to point out two of them regarding how teachers construct elementary art-making experiences and use documentation to influence their work.

Julia and Maureen in the classroom

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Art21 Educators: Julia CopperSmith and Maureen Hergott

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Talking with Art21 Educators: Julia CopperSmith and Maureen Hergott

This week I want to share a conversation that took place between myself and two of our current, amazing Art21 Educators. Julia CopperSmith and Maureen Hergott teach elementary art education for the Scott and Westdale Elementary Schools in Melrose Park near Chicago. Their work has been inspiring to all of us here at Art21, especially since they are finding ways to work with contemporary art and engage some very young students in the process.

Ai Weiwei, "Sunflower Seeds", 2010 installation view. Image: dezeen.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Join Us

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Join Us

Besides kicking off season 6 of Art in the Twenty-First Century in just a few months, Art21 Educators is gearing up for year 4, which starts this July in New York City.

Paul McCarthy, "White Snow and Dopey, Wood", 2011. Image: artobserved.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Working with Memory

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Working with Memory

Working with memory presents challenges, like many themes and ideas we choose to teach with, that are terribly difficult to get rolling without an organized, broad and juicy introduction. This week’s column explores how looking back can help with planning forward for better introductions to thematic units.

Katharina Grosse, installation view of One Floor Up More Highly at Mass MoCA. Image: ContemporaryArtDaily.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Under the Radar: Best of 2011, Part 2

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Under the Radar: Best of 2011, Part 2

Following up on last week’s post, here are a few more shows that flew under the radar in 2011, including Dana Schutz at the Neuberger and Katharina Grosse at Mass MoCA.

George Condo, "Jesus", 2002. Collection of Nancy and Robert Magoon.

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Under the Radar: Best of 2011

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Under the Radar: Best of 2011

Some excellent shows from 2011 flew a little under the radar, even a few housed in major museums, and they had plenty to offer when it comes to inspiring students and teachers. Part 1 of 2.

This work is about the way light shapes things when “cut” by physical obstructions.- Isadora Rosenbloom

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Getting Schooled at Hopper House

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Getting Schooled at Hopper House

A few weeks ago I wrote a post (public therapy, actually) about my anxiety as I organized a student exhibit at Hopper House here in New York. The seventeen artists …

Pierre Huyghe, "Timekeeper", 1999   image courtesy Marian Goodman Gallery

Teaching with Contemporary Art

But Wait, There’s More

Teaching with Contemporary Art

But Wait, There’s More

Feeling a little under the weather this week, so as a pick-me-up I decided to write about some of the phenomenal stuff happening at Art21. Kind of like an education …

Jeff Koons, "Three Ball Total Equilibrium Tank (Two Dr J Silver Series, Spalding NBA Tip-Off)", 1985   Image: themainevent.us

Teaching with Contemporary Art

How Much Is That?

Teaching with Contemporary Art

How Much Is That?

“How much is that?” or “How much is that worth?” are popular questions students ask, especially when teaching with contemporary art. Often I find myself embarrassed having to admit that …

Ai Weiwei, "Study of Perspective- White House", 1999.  Source: artlog.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Occupy This

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Occupy This

Yinka Shonibare MBE says in his season 5 segment that he would like to have the “trappings of wealth” himself, even though he may be criticizing it. And being made …

Johnny Hardstaff, "Sketchbook 3, Page 23". Image: johnnyhardstaff.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Taking Note

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Taking Note

This week I want to share what seems like a simple idea… While many of us insist that students keep sketchbooks or journals in our classes, it isn’t as popular …

Edward Hopper, "New York Movie", 1939   Image: heaviestcorner.org

Teaching with Contemporary Art

It’s OK to Make Art…

Teaching with Contemporary Art

It’s OK to Make Art…

It’s amazing… After over twenty years teaching I still get nervous. And I’m not thinking about the first day of classes (everyone gets nervous then), I was actually thinking about …

Drawing for "Neukom Vivarium," 2006

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Thinking About Interdisciplinary Teaching with Mark Dion’s Neukom Vivarium

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Thinking About Interdisciplinary Teaching with Mark Dion’s Neukom Vivarium

This past spring at the National Art Education Association’s annual conference in Seattle, Art21 brought Mark Dion not only as a keynote speaker, but also to explore his work and …

Blood cells. Image: mrbarlow.files.wordpress.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Interdisciplinary Is Not a One-Way Street

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Interdisciplinary Is Not a One-Way Street

What makes a good interdisciplinary lesson?

ferris-portrait-540x303

Teaching with Contemporary Art

ART21 New York Close Up

Teaching with New York Close Up: Keltie Ferris Spray Paints in Solitude

Teaching with Contemporary Art

ART21 New York Close Up

Teaching with New York Close Up: Keltie Ferris Spray Paints in Solitude

While watching Keltie Ferris Spray Paints in Solitude, I kept wondering to myself… What can students and teachers learn from engaging with this five minutes of film? I wanted a …

John Chamberlain, "King King Minor", 1982   Image: artinfo.com

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Getting Set for PS1’s “September 11”

Teaching with Contemporary Art

Getting Set for PS1’s “September 11”

In two weeks I am taking a group of students to visit the September 11 exhibition at PS1. Most of the high school students in these two classes have some …