Historical and Cultural Context


This site provides an overview of art movements and the context in which they developed. We have not covered every movement or period, rather selected snippets to help provide students with an opportunity to explore the elements that have influenced other artists in their quest for expressing personal voice. As with all of our work, this site remains a work in progress.


Art movements and periods | Artists and their work | Art history resources on the web | Content Standards for Visual Arts


Art movements and periods


Worth checking out:

Drawing Prompts - Each artist link provides an opening representative image suitable for drawing by students. Additional images and information are also provided to help students explore the vast posibilities of artistic expression.


Artists and their work | Top

Andy Goldsworthy - Beneath the Surface Appearance - An overview of Andy Goldsworthy and how he creates works in nature that use line, shape, form, space, value, and texture to help focus our attention.

Artistic Perception, A to Z - A look at art, design, and writing through the alphabet.

Colorfulives represent a small compilation of artists and portraits that express life and serves as a springboard for others to see.

Frida Kahlo - A look at her life and art work. "Life is pain, Highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something." - Westley, The Princess Bride - I hate this quote, but I think Frida lived it and even I can't refute her pain.

Alexei von Jawlensky - A brief bio and a look at the evolution or devolution of his portraits.

Henri Matisse - An overview of Henri Matisse's influences and work.

Mobiles - Looks at the elements of mobiles and shows works from Alexander Calder, Jackie Matisse, Andy Goldsworthy, and Henri Matisse. Serves as the background information to the "Leaves, No Litter" assignment where students develop 3-dimensional pieces to support an anti-litter campaign.

Georgia O'Keeffe - A Close Look at Flowers - Her life and work.

Georgia O'Keeffe - Deconstruct to Reconstruct - Seeing the Flower - Looks at O'Keeffe's work to help art students develop their own work.


Art and history resources on the web | Top

Art history resources on the web - http://witcombe.sbc.edu/ARTHLinks.html - Provides links by time period and country including links to museums and other sources. Maintained by Chris Witcombe, Professor, Art History, Sweet Briar College, Virginia 24595 USA witcombe@sbc.edu.

Artcyclopedia: The Guide to Museum-Quality Art on the Internet - http://www.artcyclopedia.com/ - Provides searches by movement; medium; subject; nationality; name, alphabetically; and all women artists and shows pieces at museums.

ArtLex - art dictionary - http://www.artlex.com/ - Provides definitions of more than 3,100 terms used in visual culture, along with thousands of images, pronunciation notes, great quotations and cross-references.

Mother of All Art & Art History Links - http://www.umich.edu/~hartspc/histart/mother/ - Links to: Art History Departments, Research Resources, Resources for Visual Collections, Image Collections and Online Art, A Sampling of Online Exhibits, Fine Art Schools and Departments, Art Museums, Textual and Linguistic Resources.

Yahoo! Arts > Art History > Periods and Movements - http://dir.yahoo.com/Arts/Art_History/Periods_and_Movements/ - Links to categories of movements from Abstract to Symbolism and several specific site listings.

WebMuseum, Paris - Artist index - http://www.ibiblio.org/wm/paint/auth/ - Lists artists in alphabetical order.


Content Standards for Visual Arts - Historical and Cultural Context | Top

Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and culture

Students analyze the role and development of the visual arts in past and present cultures throughout the world, noting human diversity as it relates to visual arts and artists.

Role and development of the visual arts

  • Identify similarities and differences in the purposes of art created in selected cultures.
  • Identify and describe the role and influence of new technologies on contemporary artwork.

Diversity of the visual arts

  • Identify and describe trends in the visual arts and discuss how the diverse issues of time, place, and cultural influence are reflected in selected artworks.
  • Discuss the purposes of art in selected contemporary cultures.
    Select grade level for specific standards at http://www.cde.ca.gov/board/pdf/visual.pdf (pp. 152-154)

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E-Mail Doug at mrdoug@aznet.net or Melissa at mmckinstry@sdja.com


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