"Winter Wonderland", 23" x 27" framed photograph
A short vignette in the life of a substitute teacher....
Front cover of my recently purchased book
I was asked to come in as the music teacher at the local elementary school yesterday. Because the music room is also the art room, I knew I would be allowed to incorporate art in my lesson plan if nothing specific was left for me to do so I brought in my ipod and speakers along with one of my new Matisse art books. I used music to help inspire the students with their color choices, also using templates I cut of dancing figures. We used crayons to create brightly colored drawings, very similar to the lesson from middle school used last week (simplified and age appropriate).
The book cover was not displayed for students to see; I used several pages in the book with examples of the cut-outs Matisse created later in his life.
My figure templates
As I was sharing facts about Matisse's life, I was holding the book and some of the boys started laughing... I asked why.... they said it was because of the book.... I then looked at the back side of the book and see a graphic black and white photograph of Matisse sitting in his studio drawing a nude model. I didn't even realize the photograph was there because I was only focused on the art! I continued with the lesson and everyone had fun drawing. Soon into the next class, the 4th grade teachers came to see the book and the photo, followed by the school principal. The principal said she had to send home a letter explaining to the parents that "inadvertently" the students were exposed to an "inappropriate photograph". I felt horrible that my passion and love for Matisse turned into a "damage control" letter.
(*footnote: I did not display the back of the book at any time, but was simply holding it as I was talking about the artist)
Live and Learn.