Monthly Archives: March 2013

Art 1 – Wolf Kahn landscapes – Due 4/1


Wolf Kahn review

Read the review linked above and the article  linked below. Within the site below, watch the two videos (note especially, in the second video, the path of his career and his comments about painting.)

Wolf Kahn studio visit

In your comments, include the following:

What do you find as the most interesting art historical fact and why?

Does his personal history in Nazi Germany and “Kindertransport” refugee change the way you view and interpret his work?

What insights about painting your own landscapes do you gain from listening to him, looking at, and reading about his paintings ?

In your sketchbook, do a 1 hour landscape, observed from real life, inspired by Wolf Kahn’s work. Try to convey the facts, essence, and spirit of the place.

This will be the plan for your painting when you get back.  (You may want a back up photo for when you paint although most of your painting will come from the preparatory drawing.)


Art 3 – Surrealism and change of scale – Due Mon 3/18


Watch the two entertaining movie segments (from Honey I Shrunk the Kids and Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland). Look for ideas and notice the Surreal effects of change of scale and the emotional result of those distortions.

Shrinking and Growing Alice

Look at the following power point on the history of Surrealism and pay particular attention to the historic context.

History of Surrealism powerpoint

Comment on the similarities, and significance of the use of distortion and change of scale for entertainment, psychological effect, and the expression of cultural dis-ease.

Look at the following images as inspiration for your project and link to one you especially like and explain why  you like it.  If you can, tie it in to the context of your ideas expressed in your previous comments as meaningful on an entertaining, psychological, or cultural level.

Surrealist images

Art 2 – Divided picture plane – Pat Steir – Due Mon 3/18


1. Listen to the interview and pay close attention to the ideas about painting as conceptual. Consider how your divided picture plane portrait is conceptual and comment on your strategy.

2. Look at her installation in the following two links and comment on the expanded way this self-portrait works for the viewer.

Pat Steir self-portrait installation

Pat Steir ears

If you find this artist interesting, read the review below, (look up images for her Brueghel series) and voice your opinion about the critic’s assessment of her Brueghel series.

NY Times review

Art 1 – Brushwork and painting trees – Due 3/18


Watch the following two videos and note techniques in brushwork, variation in tone, opposition of large strokes with detail strokes, and the beauty of the composition in the last one (comsider the arangement within the area on the page and the use of space, movement into and around the picture plane.)

Artist in China

Comment on brushwork and technique in both, the use and importance of tonal variety, the purpose of large strokes with detail strokes,  and also comment on how the Chinese artist creates balance and interest in the composition (how does the artist draw your interest in and carry it around the picture plane.)

Spend an hour drawing a variety of different kinds of trees from observation from real life, not photos.  It need not be a composition or scene.  These are studies of the structure of trees. You may need to use several pages.

Art 1 – glazing with transparencies and “learning to see” – Due 3/12


1. Which of the following tips  from the site below do you find most important in your exploration of the transparent painting process? Explain why in the context of one of your paintings.

tips on transparent glazing

2. What did you learn from the short article below about painting in transparent glazes and how will you apply it to your current painting?

painting in glazes in acrylics

Here’s a great quote from Black Horse Art Supply blurb on artist Carolyn Anderson:

“Interpreting visual reality should be about exploration and not just an attempt at re-creation. Great art is dependent on observation and strong visual elements. Learning to see and compare visual information is a process of growth and exploration. A drawing of a tree done by a child and an adult are not much different from one another. The difference lies in the complexity of the painting and the artist’s ability to notice nuance and variation and to organize and edit that information into a personal expression. Craft without creativity is only part of the equation. Painting is about learning to see – and hopefully, sharing how we see and what is visually important to us, with others.”

What can you find in the quote above that applies to your process of painting and discovery in the paintings you have done so far in class? Be thorough in your explanation of the ideas and their connection to your work.

Here are some of her paintings from her website:

Carolyn Anderson

For sketchbook, in preparation for your next painting, spend an hour drawing  landscapes from personal photos (show foreground, middleground, and background)  or draw directly  at a landscape  site and take a photo for  reference..

Art 2- Self Portraits – Due 3/26


1. Read the commentary about Van Gogh’s self-portrait and comment on

what interests you most about the commentary and the portrait.

Van Gogh self-portrait

2. Read the commentary about Rembrandt’s self-portraits and comment on

what interests you most about the commentary and which portrait you find most interesting and why.

Rembrandt self-portraits

3. Read the blog about Kollwitz’s self-portraits and comment on

what interest you most in the commentary and which portrait  you  like the most and why. (You may google more of her portraits than those shown here.)

Kollwitz self-portraits

4. Finally, comment on the process of drawing your own self-portrait following the experience of drawing others.