Monday, November 1, 2010

"Goodbye Matisse, Hello Hokusai..."

 ... say the Dolvin second grade art students.  We wrap up our Matisse mini-unit with our "Beasts of the Sea" style collages, now on display, and begin one of my favorite units of the year... the Art of Japan!  This week, we are learning a bit about Katsushika Hokusai and his many views of Mount Fuji.  We are using our sketchbooks (Hokusai called his sketchbook "manga") to practice drawing views of the mountain from near and far, and in different seasons - everyone's favorite is when it is surrounded by blooming pink cherry blossoms.  Soon after, we will create traditional ceramic Japanese tea bowls. 

"From the age of five I have had a mania for sketching the forms of things. From about the age of fifty I produced a number of designs, yet of all I drew prior to the age of seventy there is truly nothing of great note. At the age of seventy-two I finally apprehended something of the true quality of birds, animals, insects, fish and of the vital nature of grasses and trees. Therefore, at eighty I shall have made some progress, at ninety I shall have penetrated even further the deeper meaning of things, at one hundred I shall have become truly marvelous, and at one hundred and ten, each dot, each line shall surely possess a life of its own." - Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849)

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