ARTWORKS: (35 minutes total time for this part of the tour)
Orientation Circle – (Demonstration on felt board)
You will be creating a genre scene, a drawing of everyday life, in the studio today. Since this drawing will be of a room with pictures on the walls and people in the space, let’s create a similar scene on this feltboard.
Artists often use a special drawing trick called one-point perspective to create an illusion of space or depth in their drawings and paintings. For example, on this flat, two-dimensional board, we have placed diagonal lines to show the sidewalls, floor and ceiling of the room. Notice how these lines go back or recede in space and come together or meet at this dot on the back wall of the room (use a ruler to illustrate this).
The point where all the lines come together or converge is called the vanishing point.
Using the trick of one-point perspective and a vanishing point makes this room appear to be three-dimensional or have depth, even though it is on a surface that only has two dimensions (height and width).
Now notice how the pictures on the wall, the rug, the bench, and even the skylight have all been drawn on diagonal lines that come together or converge at the vanishing point (use the ruler again to demonstrate). When you go to the studio, you’ll be creating designs made up of lines, shapes, colors, and patterns for the pictures on the walls and the rug on the floor of your room in perspective.
Let’s finish creating this room with another special trick that artists use to make two-dimensional artwork look more three-dimensional or have the illusion of depth.
By placing a larger sized figure in the foreground (near the bottom of the picture), it appears to be closer to us. Now let’s place a smaller sized figure in the middle ground of this room, so it appears to be further away from us. Notice how this use of size differences helps make the room appear to go back in space or have depth.
When you create your own room drawing, you will also use different sized figures to give an illusion of depth.
Robin Van Lear
This is an interpretation of a famous painting, Summer Twilight, by Stuart Davis in the Museum’s collection (show reproduction). What is the difference between the original painting and this work of art? (2-D vs 3-D)
Stuart Davis was inspired by jazz music during his lifetime, and his paintings have been compared to jazz music. What do you see in this work of art that makes you think of jazz music?
In a moment we will listen to music that Stuart Davis probably heard during the 1930’s.
Recollections IV, 2008
Now we’ll be going through an art installation created specifically for this location in the Museum by the media artist, Ed Tannenbaum. This installation uses modern technology, such as a camera, computer, projector, and special screen to create art.
Stuart Davis responded to jazz by using paint. Now you can respond to the music by moving your body to create colors and patterns on the Tannenbaum screen. (Keep the music playing as the students “dance” in front of the screen, moving groups of 7 at a time through the exhibit, while the other students wait at the Davis exhibit).
Hopper in Perspective, 2005
Alabama Shakespeare Festival scene shop
This is another 3-D interpretation of a famous painting in the Museum’s collection: New York Office by Edward Hopper. (Show the reproduction.)
Tell me about what you see in this scene. Let’s think of a story that might go along with this scene.
What you think is written in the letter the woman is holding?
Who is calling on the phone? What are they saying?
What does the woman do after she has read the letter and answered the phone? What does the other worker in the office do?
(Call on the students as they raise their hands with ideas about the possible narrative for the exhibit. Then pick 3 students to go into the office and act out the story, according to their answers to the questions).
GENRE SCENE (ORIENTATION CIRCLE)
BIRDLAND | COLOR ME IN MOTION
EDWARD HOPPER, NEW YORK OFFICE