Visual Arts

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The framing gallery Lower school art exhibit.

Visual Arts are part of the students' mandatory curriculum from Pre School to 9th grade.

Starting in 10th Grade, it is offered as an elective.

Extension programs and clubs also offer opportunities for students to further develop their skills and creativity.

Our students exhibit in public galleries and win awards each year.

High School Students Exhibit at the Mamaroneck Artists Guild

Upper School Art Show

Grades 6 through 12

Arts Curriculum

1st Grade

In first grade the exploration of color and design, through the use of basic techniques and acquisition of art terms, is emphasized. The continued development of fine motor skills and gross motor skills is consistently incorporated into projects and activities. Vocabulary and definitions, art critiques and inclusive class discussions are developed to build self-esteem and creativity. Students begin to maintain an art journal as an opportunity to respond to their own artistic process. Interdisciplinary projects with music are created to contribute to one of the school concerts. All students contribute to the annual art show.

2nd Grade

In second grade class projects challenge and further develop motor skills. Students learn new vocabulary and use new mediums. They continue to acquire knowledge of new techniques and applications. Major artists are introduced and their contributions to the art world and history are shared with the students. The students use computer technology to add information to their work. The students continue to maintain an art journal throughout the year and participate in the art show in the spring.

3rd Grade

Class projects begin to include a broader vocabulary of the basic elements of art, encouraging students to develop their own style, and introducing cultural aspects of art that can be applied to project work. Students become further independent in the art studio and participate in interdisciplinary projects that enhance their academic program. All students continue to maintain their art journals and participate in the annual art show.

4th Grade

In fourth grade the emphasis is on encouraging students to develop their own style, while applying new mediums and techniques. New vocabulary, renowned artists and their work, and definitions of art are discussed in class critiques. Interdisciplinary projects in connection to social studies and science curricula are created. Creating art on an iPad is introduced. All students continue to grow their personal art journal and contribute to the annual art show.

5th Grade

In fifth grade the class projects encourage creativity and individuality. They challenge students to use techniques in two-dimensional and three-dimensional art. Using further equipment and new techniques enhance the challenge of each project. They explore creating art with iPads and beginning photography. Each student maintains an art journal throughout the year with written and graphic responses to each project conducted in class. All students contribute to the annual art show which showcases their development and the creativity of their accomplishments.

6th Grade

The sixth grade art curriculum applies the principles of art to the exploration of the spherical form. Students are instructed in the use of a variety of materials such as pastels, pencils, paints, and clay as they develop their ability to capture a rounded 3-dimensional likeness. Some projects are completed from observation, while others call for students to draw from their own imagination. Students are provided with the fundamentals of color theory that they will continue to build upon and apply in the coming years. The art course is taught in English.

7th Grade

The seventh grade art curriculum builds upon elements of art covered in the sixth grade art course, reinforcing skills such as shading, use of color, and 3-dimensional form making. Drawings from life require students to examine cylinders and ellipses. Students learn basics of perspective and atmospheric perspective. A range of techniques are demonstrated and implemented using familiar and new materials, such as pencils, pens, and watercolor paints. Abstraction of form is introduced toward the end of the school year. The art course is taught in English and is mandatory for all seventh graders.

8th Grade

The eighth grade curriculum takes an in-depth look at color theory and pursue the development of abstract representation through a variety of drawing and painting exercises, such as blind contour drawing and painting, and by representing words or phrases through abstract forms and colors. In other projects, students build upon their knowledge of perspective by applying one-point perspective to cubes. Students are encouraged to push the boundaries of their creativity as they realize the goals of each lesson. The art course is taught in English and is mandatory for all eighth graders.

9th Grade

Mandatory Art Course

Projects assigned in the ninth grade build upon the skills developed in the sixth, seventh, and eighth grade art curricula; the principles of art are reviewed as students are introduced to more materials and techniques. Some assignments provide students with only a few rules pertaining to theme, size, and attention to detail or three-dimensional appearance, thereby fostering the students’ artistic license and requiring students to pursue their own vision. Other projects, such as a large still-life, are a culmination of the study of composition, light and shading, perspective, and the rendering of three-dimensional forms. The course is taught in English.

Art Elective

This elective course builds upon skills taught in the required art curriculum, while allowing students greater creative freedom than in the required art classes. Projects often draw inspiration from diverse cultures and artists, exposing students to a diverse range of creative expressions. These range from mask-making to designing shoes, but all, whether in form-making, patterning, color theory, or abstraction, reinforce the core required art curriculum of that grade. The course is taught in English.

10th Grade

Art I (elective)

Using a problem-solving approach, students will improve their drawing skills, gain a deeper understanding of color, and learn to organize more meaningful compositions. Students will create drawings, collages, prints, paintings, and sculptures in order to communicate personal ideas and solve visual problems. One important area of focus involves the depiction of pictorial space. Overlapping, linear and atmospheric perspective, and the rendering of volumes will be explored –to equip students with the tools they need to construct pictorial space with clarity and confidence. Students will undertake both in-class and out-of-class projects. They will benefit by discussing their works during class critiques. And they will begin to build a portfolio that shows the range, depth, and quality of their artistic knowledge. The course is taught in English.

11th Grade

Art II (elective)

Students in this class will complete a variety of assignments that require them to think more creatively and work more independently. In the process, they will begin to develop their own visual voices. Students will take part in group critiques of their work, participate in art history discussions, and enjoy other experiences that will help them to develop an awareness of their own artistic sensibilities and concerns. The ultimate goal of this course is to prepare students technically and conceptually for further study of art at FASNY and in college. Students will focus on improving their ability to render complex natural forms from direct observation. In particular, they will explore the beauty of human form through lessons on proportion, shading, gesture, the skeletal system, and on capturing the expressive qualities of the model. Students will continue the development of a portfolio of original artwork that can be used for further study in art, as preparation for the Baccalaureate exam, and as a supplement to their college applications. The course is taught in English.

12th Grade

Art III (elective)

This course prepares students for the Baccalaureate exam in visual art.

Three specific works of art are studied in depth, and students are encouraged to forge connections between these three works and their own creative explorations. Students construct a portfolio of works throughout the year, including sketches, drawings, photographs, and finished projects in a variety of media. The resulting portfolio documents the student’s personal artistic process, growth, and understanding in the broader context of art history and culture. This course is taught in English. The oral exam is conducted in French.