From Process to Print: Graphic Works by Romare Bearden - More than seventy-five full-color reproductions demonstrate Bearden's printmaking process as he worked and reworked particular images, themes, and techniques; illuminate how his thinking and approaches were shaped through collaborations with master printmakers.
Romare Bearden: His Life and Art - This book is a fantastic source of information, both written and visual, on one of our country's most underrated and neglected artists.
The Art of Romare Bearden: A Book of Postcards - The works reproduced in this book offer a glimpse of the remarkable art that arose from that passion. Contains 30 oversized color postcards. Size: 4 3/4 x 6 7/8" (12 x 17 cm). These cards can be passed out among the class at the beginning of the lesson.
1. Students discuss the life and art of Romare Bearden, and look at a variety of examples of his artwork (especially photo-montage work from the 1960’s); his work with the Spiral group during the Civil Rights Era, and the political content of his work, is to be particularly emphasized.
2. Students choose a Martin Luther King, Jr. quote; they must make sure they understand the meaning of the quote (some are more difficult than others!). They then list at least 5 objects/images that could represent the quote, and decide what type of setting the collage will have (i.e. city, country, interior, etc.).
3. Students create a thumbnail sketch of the planned layout of their collage.
4. Students begin searching through magazines and newspapers to find their images. They will usually need reminders about cutting images around the edge, eliminating the original background, so they can become part of a new context. Images can be stored in envelopes until needed.
5. Once they have a good amount of images, students can start the collage by creating the background. Glue must be applied right up to the edge of images, to reduce "fly-away" pieces. Students can turn the cut-out upside down on scrap paper, and use a small piece of poster board or other thin cardboard to "scrape" the glue all the way to the edges. Once the background is complete, they should begin arranging and gluing the images in the foreground. Emphasize mixing of individual images, especially figures/faces! Remind students that if a particular image cannot be found, they can always make it from cut plain paper.
6. When the collage is complete, students should go through the entire collage, and make sure all edges are completely glued down. A small paintbrush with glue works well for this. Lift loose edges and apply glue with small brush.
7. When the collage is complete, students fill out their self-assessment form (this is a Publisher file - alternate Rubric below).
8. A group critique can be held to discuss craftsmanship, creation of foreground/background, and the how well each collage represented the quote chosen.
Assessment Rubric: (adapted from Marianne Galyk)
Assignment: Romare Beardon/Martin Luther King, Jr. Collage
Circle the number in pencil that best shows how well you feel that you completed that criterion for the assignment.
Criteria 1 – Planning sketches - Brainstorming.
9 – 8
6 or less
Criteria 2 – Overall Design of collage - use of elements and principles of design
9 – 8
6 or less
Criteria 3 – Communication of desired quote.
9 – 8
6 or less
Criteria 4 – Effort: took time to develop idea & complete project? (Didn’t rush.) Good use of class time?
9 – 8
6 or less
Criteria 5 – Craftsmanship – Neat, clean & complete? Skillful use of the art tools & media?
9 – 8
6 or less
x 2 = 100
National Standards (Standards
covered depend on class discussion and reflection writing)
1. Understanding and applying media, techniques, and processes
2. Using knowledge of structures and functions
3. Choosing and evaluating a range of subject matter, symbols, and ideas
4. Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures
5. Reflecting upon and assessing the characteristics and merits of their work and the work of others
6. Making connections between visual arts and other disciplines
Students apply media, techniques, and processes with sufficient skill, confidence, and sensitivity that their intentions are carried out in their artworks
Students demonstrate the ability to form and defend judgments about the characteristics and structures to accomplish commercial, personal, communal, or other purposes of art
Students reflect on how artworks differ visually, spatially, temporally, and functionally, and describe how these are related to history and culture
Students identify intentions of those creating artworks, explore the implications of various purposes, and justify their analyses of purposes in particular works
Students conceive and create works of visual art that demonstrate an understanding of how the communication of their ideas relates to the media, techniques, and processes they use
Students evaluate the effectiveness of artworks in terms of organizational structures and functions
Students apply subjects, symbols, and ideas in their artworks and use the skills gained to solve problems in daily life
Students describe meanings of artworks by analyzing how specific works are created and how they relate to historical and cultural contexts
Students compare characteristics of visual arts within a particular historical period or style with ideas, issues, or themes in the humanities or sciences
Students create artworks that use organizational principles and functions to solve specific visual arts problems
(Advanced) Students describe the origins of specific images and ideas and explain why they are of value in their artwork and in the work of others
Students analyze relationships of works of art to one another in terms of history, aesthetics, and culture, justifying conclusions made in the analysis and using such conclusions to inform their own art making
Students reflect analytically on various interpretations as a means for understanding and evaluating works of visual art
(Advanced) Students synthesize the creative and analytical principles and techniques of the visual arts and selected other arts disciplines, the humanities, or the sciences