Magazine article School Arts

Chairs with Flair

Magazine article School Arts

Chairs with Flair

Article excerpt

How do you bring art history and creative application together in a dynamic, fun, and thought provoking way? In this art problem, students explore the arts of architecture, design, painting, and sculpture within four time periods: early colonial (1500-1700), late colonial (1700-1776), the quest for independence (1776-1860), and industrialization and growth (1860-1900).

* understanding the contributions of various groups to North America's artistic heritage.

* appreciating the variety of influences on North American art, and design and attitudes toward art in North American culture.

Lesson Overview

Students will create a design for a unique chair. Through class discussion, readings, and slide presentations, students understand that in early colonial times in America, most settlers only had simple handmade stools with no backs. As time passed, chair-making became an art.


heavy-weight cardboard, paint, tape, X-Acto knives, polyester stuffing, lightweight material or old white sheets, needles and thread

Guiding Practice

We began the activity through class discussion and response to the following questions:

* Is there an odd chair in your classroom? In your home?

* Is there a chair that doesn't quite match the others of fit at a table or desk?

* Are the chairs in your classroom, the cafeteria, library, and the principal's office all the same?

In order to give students more direction and expand their knowledge and appreciation for North American art, they research an artist from the twentieth century, such as Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Jackson Pollock, Georgia O'Keeffe, of Wassily Kandinsky, then design a unique. …

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