Friday, January 22, 2010

Fantastic Friday with the Arts - Cezanne/Debussy

This week our fantastic Friday began with a fun lesson about Paul Cezanne. A French artist born on January 12th, 1839. Cezanne is most known for his still life paintings, which makes this a great opportunity to have your students give this subject matter a try. We began our lesson by looking at quite a few of Cezanne's paintings. The one entitiled "Apples and Oranges" is a great example of his still life painting. We discussed his biographical information as well. I printed off the info from this website -Apples and Oranges by Paul Cezanne, and reviewed it with the kids. I especially liked the way this website mentioned the fact that Cezanne did not think he was good at portraiture. This revelation caused him to steer away from portraiture, and focus more on still life, for which he is most known today. My kids found it reasurring that just because they are not skilled in one area, it doesn't mean that they won't be gifted in another. Next, I set up a still life for them to paint. My still life included oranges in a basket, a pitcher, and a mug. The kids used tempera paint. I gave them the primary colors (red, blue, and yellow), and had them mix their own secondary colors (orange, purple, and green). This was also a great time to show the kids how to achieve a more 3D look when painting something round. I suggested shading on one side to achieve a more realistic look.

Our music connection this week was Claude Debussy (one of my personal favorites), born in France in 1862. He was an impressionistic musician composing music during the same period that Cezanne was painting. We listened to his fabulous music while creating our still life paintings. I used this website to discuss his biographical info with the kids -Classics for Kids. Samples of his music can be found there also.

See ya next week for more "Fantastic Friday with the Arts"!

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