Lesson Plan: Romare Bearden Collage

Romare Bearden Collage

Submitted by: Connie Ferguson, 2012 Arizona Art Teacher of the Year and Teacher at Riverview Elementary in El Mirage, Arizona. (Formerly art teacher at Monroe Middle School, Monroe, WI)
DAYS: 10
UNIT: Painting/Collage
FOCUS: Color, Shape, Texture, Line, and Unity
See Contemporary artist and teacher, Barbara Yalof
See Elementary Romare Bearden Lesson - grades 3 through 8 (from Art Aware)


OBJECTIVES: The learner will:
1. Recognize collage as used in works of art.
2. Create a collage based on a masterpiece.
3. Critique student art work.
4. Recognize and appreciate the work of Romare Bearden.



Wisconsin State Standards- The learner will:
A4 know about some styles of art from times.
B6 know how to describe, analyze, interpret, and judge art images and objects from various cultures, artists, and designers.
J4 learn ways philosophers think about art.


1Romare Bearden: His Life and Art.
Romare Bearden Visual Jazz - YouTube video
DVD: The Art of Romare Bearden.
The Art of Romare Bearden.
Romare Bearden, Serenade, Sunset and Moonrise with Maudell Sleet, ShowTime
Romare Bearden: Celebrating the Victory.
Romare Bearden: Negro Artist (Archive) - See many images of his work
Print: The Blues, 1974 by Romare Bearden.
Print: Three Folk Musicians by Romare Bearden
Jazz CD/mp3 Title: Romare Bearden Revealed.
Artist: Branford Marsalis Quartet, Loved Ones.


Get assorted master prints ready for students - Scholastic Art magazines and other sources.



View and discuss Romare Bearden’s work.




9x12 white Drawing Paper. (for painting)


12x18 white Tag board. (for collage)


Drawing Pencils.


Watercolor Paint.


Tempera Paint.


Tools for texturing

Contour Line



Water Basins


Paper towel






White Glue.


Plastic Trays



Questions for Discussion:

What is a collage? What kinds of media do you think the artist used? What do you notice about the different papers? How does overlapping create space? What do you think the artist was trying to tell us? Would this picture look the same if it was all done with paint? Explain.
Explain the 3 simplified theories of art, imitation, emotionalism, and formalism.
Have student categorize their chosen masterpiece.
Demonstrate Decorative Paper techniques. Discuss Texture.
Play Jazz CD while students work.



1. Look through Art resources to choose a famous masterpiece painting to copy in collage technique.
· The masterpiece must have people in the painting.
· The reproduction must be in color.

2. Once the masterpiece is chosen, draw it using contour line.
· Use the entire format of the paper.
· Pay attention to the direction of the masterpiece so that the paper matches.

3. Store this drawing in your portfolio.

4. Note the colors of the masterpiece, reproduce one color at a time, using either tempera paint or watercolors.
· Do not recreate the colors for the faces and other body parts, these will be
done with magazines.

5. Tempera**** Get a plastic tray, color(s) of paint needed for the first color, brush, texture tool, paper towel.

6. Watercolors**** paint strip, water basin, brush, paper towel.

7. Create an area of color, filling the paper, and choose a texture to reproduce.

8. Put your name on the edge, on the front.

9. Put the wet "painting" on the Drying Rack..

10. Begin the next color needed. Repeat this until all colors are achieved.

11. All paint swatches are to dry and then put all of them in your portfolio.

12. Bring out the drawing from your portfolio.

13. Choose the paint swatches that you painted for your background. Tear or cut small pieces to fit into the selected areas. Secure these pieces to the tagboard with white glue.
· Close observation is needed to recreate the space.

14. Complete the background and move on to the middleground.

15. Overlap all collage pieces and do not leave any tagboard showing.

16. Continue with creating your collage until all areas are covered, excluding the face and other body parts you wish to use magazines to complete the work.

17. Look at the magazines for facial features and hands in the same position as your painted subjects. Cut the parts out that are needed.

· Hard to reproduce items such as shoes, purses, small animals, etc, may be cut from magazines.

18. Cut or tear your magazine pieces and glue onto your tagboard. Use at least 4 sources to create the face.

Throughout the project, you must be referring to the masterpiece for color, shape, space and details.


Romare Bearden Composition

3 Artwork has utilized the space of the paper in an effective manner

2 Artwork has somewhat utilized the space of the paper in an effective manner

1 Artwork has not utilized the space of the paper effectively


Representation of Picture

3 Artwork has close resemblance to picture

2 Artwork resembles picture

1 Artwork has little resemblance to picture


Fragmentation of Figures

3 Student has utilized 4 or more pieces to construct face/figure

2 Student has utilized 3 pieces to construct face/figure

1 Student has utilized less than 3 pieces to construct face/figure



3 Surface is completely flat and contains no gaps in application of paper

2 Surface is mostly flat with minimal gaps in application of paper

1 Work contains many gaps and unglued pieces of paper Effort and Use of Class Time
3 used class time provided and took suggestion well
2 talkative and had to be reminded to get to work several times

1 had to be reminded to work every class period, too talkative



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