Continuing with our week of resource freebies, below you will see a studies exam for S1 & S2 (aged 11-13) based around Mexican traditions and art. The assessment is split into two parts; general comprehension and cultural knowledge. Each question is labeled with a maximum point rating in brackets.
As with all resources given away this week, download the file from the ‘Box’ (bottom right-hand column).
Mr Jack kindly took this photo of everyone that helped put the ‘Days of the Dead’ exhibition together. Clockwise from the top left: Mr Dunlop, Chelsea, Rachel, Megan, Beth, Louise, Craig, Louise, Erin, Stewart, Jessica and Dannielle.
The exhibition took place on the stage of the social area in Gleniffer High School on the 16th January 2009. The event featured around 80 skeletons, 20 masks, 40 guitar banners, 30 skull paintings and a 20ft banner. Mexican music and visuals were played through the sound system and projector above the stage. The event had around 500 pupils pass through it, each pupil was given the chance to sample some mexican cuisine (chips and dips) at the exit. The event only lasted 25 minutes, supervised by myself and 11 pupils (my skeleton staff).
Below you will find a selection of the Days of the Dead artworks. Papier mache skeletons in cardboard and papier mache coffins, each pupil tried to make their work unique by creating individual themes. This is not all of the skeletons made, there were around one hundred actually made, though it’s a few that I thought stood out from the rest.
Below is a selection of my very favourite skeletons made for Days of the Dead. I know I shouldn’t do the whole ‘favourite’ thing, but the following few sculptures are the ones that I wish that I had made, or really want to keep. Unfortunately, they’ll be all going back to their rightful owners tomorrow.
Black Magic by Sarah is fantastically smooth. Sarah’s application of papier mache and paint was controlled and well thought out. The colour works really well and her skeleton has an air of sadness around him. It’s a really beautiful piece.
Gaara by Shannon is a mixture of cultures. It merges Japanese culture with Mexican tradition. I didn’t know the character that Shannon had based it on, though when I saw the image of him, I was amazed at Shannon’s attention to detail. The skeleton’s outfit and hair are cleverly crafted, along with his ‘gourd’ at his feet. Though I feel that it’s maybe his huge hands that make the piece for me.
Mr & Mrs by Rachel and Beth is a great joint effort. Both the girls decided that they would combine their works to make a dead married couple. The dead bride and groom is a often used image in Mexican tradition. Skeletons are usually just doing what normal people do. Beth brought in the lace for her gown, and the flower details are scrunched tissues. The boxes are finished with gold wire and bell decals.
Jake The Funeral Director by Louise. I’ve just recently written about him as he featured as Artwork of the Week. Here’s another lovely photo of him though, for you to savour.
Alfie (El Mariachi) by Jessica was featured as Artwork of the Week many weeks ago when this blog was just started. At that time the box had been painted and the body made, though he didn’t have the character he has now. Dressed as a traditional Mariachi with fiddle in hand, he just looks so frustrated at his own playing ability. His huge eyes helps add great depth to his face. An amazing finish to his hat and instrument make this little sculpture look like something that should be treasured. I’m sure it will be.
The Artist by Chelciann was the first skeleton finished. Chelciann basically lead the way for the pupils adapting the skeletons to their own ideas. Her themed boxed and skeleton was her own choosing. The skeleton’s apron is made from a paper towel and his little pallette and brush are made from cardboard and papier mache. He has a great face and his head is finished off with a little tilted beret. A well executed and detailed piece of work.
Around twenty posters were coloured by S1 and S2 pupils for promoting the ‘Days Of The Dead’ event. I created the posters in Photoshop, and I’m also well aware that ‘Dia de los Muertos’ is ‘Day Of The Dead’ whereas ‘Dias de los Muertos’ is the plural. I just didn’t want to confuse the pupils further with the whole ‘is it a day or a few days?’ conversation. After all, I’m not a Spanish teacher… Yet.
‘Artwork of the Week’ comes from Louise in 2L. She made this amazing skeleton in a coffin for ‘Days of the Dead’. Her application of the Papier Mache and Paint was fantastic. It gives her a work a real smooth look and makes it look very professional. Probably more professional than they’d ever bother to make in Mexico, as they are very disposable. This is the second time Louise has had work featured on the blog. She is becoming quite a regular. Fantastic stuff.