Today's lesson had us going dotty thanks to the Pointillist art of George Seurat. We started by looking at examples of this famous French artist, including his most well known work, "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of la Grande Jatte". The kids enjoyed our impromptu french lesson, pronouncing the artist's name with a french accent as in "Jeh-or-jeh Sir-rat".
Pointillism is a technique of painting Seurat explored in the late 1800s, in which small dots of colour are applied in patterns to form an image. Most people are familiar with Impressionism (think Monet, Renoir and Degas), which was the art style that came before Pointillism.
After viewing the artworks close up and seeing all the hundreds of dots, the kids were intrigued to see the optical illusion that occurred when viewing the artworks from faraway. In your mind's eye, the picture starts to blur and your eye fills in the details to form a complete picture.
In order to create our own Pointillist artwork, we had to discard the paintbrush as the traditional tool of painters and use cotton ear buds instead. This challenged the students to rethink the tools artists use to create work and opened their minds to using dots rather than line to create images.
It also paves the way for next week's lesson, when we will finally be able to apply our art knowledge and experiences of the last eight weeks, to attach our bottle caps onto our painted timber panels. Each bottle cap is like a tiny pointillist dot and we'll be using hundreds of them to create our final image.