Upper School art students at The Academy are provided with compelling material that excites and challenges their thinking. We dive far beneath the surface, and we study each famous artist, ancient civilization, or artistic concept in depth. Each grade level discovers a different portion of the art history timeline, and students gain new perspectives on material taught in other subjects, such as History and Latin. Students will make meaningful connections to areas of study in Art History by applying similar art-making techniques to their own practice in studio art. Students experience the work of both contemporary and historical artists through slideshow presentations, visual media, and research projects. They draw upon their own diverse experiences and make perceptive observations during our lively classroom discussions of art. Critique and self-reflection play an important role in artistic growth. Students practice providing constructive artistic critiques, and they learn to utilize feedback from others.
Lessons on contour line drawing, shading techniques, proportion and composition build the artistic foundation for students in all Upper School grades. Seeing the way light and shadow hit the objects they attempt to draw helps students to depict realism in their work. Each class studies aspects of color theory and color relationships. Common to all grade levels in Upper School are lessons on landscape, still life, and portraiture. All students work with acrylic paints to create vibrant self-portraits on canvas.
Working with recycled materials is an exercise in creative thinking. It’s also an opportunity to think about the waste stream and how we can better handle our discards to benefit the earth. Every alternate year, 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students repurpose a wide range of recycled materials to make fashion outfits inspired by a famous artist, an art movement, or something from art history. Our recycled materials fashion show is a highly-anticipated community event.