Term: 2 Year: 2011
Inspired by the art of Max Beckman and NGV-International workshop on the distorted image.
Last year’s exhibition of C19th and C20th Art from the Stadel exhibition was enthusiastically received by
Year 6 students who painted individual responses to the work of Max Beckmann at an NGV-I workshop.
Upon seeing the Year 6’s artwork I decided that Year 5 students could use a similar model for a
collaborative artwork based around the idea of a city. Year 5 students visited the NGV-Australian as part of their
SOSE program and focused on the Gold Rush, Melbourne’s establishment and immigration. They saw a range of
artworks depicting the developing cityscape of Melbourne.
The students used the thinking routine of “See, Think, Wonder” to compare and
contrast the large A3 photocopies of photographs of present day Melbourne and Max Beckmann’s work from
the exhibition. They discussed Beckmann’s artwork and the photographs of the cityscapes, the patterns within
the buildings, the shapes and spaces of the buildings and Beckmann’s use of distorted images in his paintings
and how they could utilise this technique in their work.
Students worked in groups of three or four and selected a photograph of Melbourne they were going to use. In their
group they discussed how they would distort the photograph or which features would remain prominent or be eliminated.
Using chalk they sketched out their scene onto Arches 300gsm cold pressed Watercolour paper.
The lines and shapes were painted with black Vipond paint and the spaces within the patterns were painted with
solid areas of colour using Vipond paint. The colours were mixed with white paint to achieve the pastel hues.
The visual impact of these large format works was stunning. And they were well received and admired by all who saw
them, providing many interesting conversations.
MLC Junior School
Visual Art Co-ordinator
Suitable for Level 5