DEGAS

Degas, Edgar Degas, art appreciation for children, art activities for children, art appreciation

1834- 1917

Our study of Edgar Degas led us down many rabbit trails! I chose to do Tchaikovsky as our composer for the term to fit in with our artist, so we feasted on "theatre and the arts"!

We found so many wonderful resources to go along with our study that we did very few hands on activities with this particular artist, as we seemed to either have our noses in books about him or looking at his art!

We began with an introdution to him with a book from the Smart About Art Series. We have enjoyed many of them as a wonderful introduction to an artist, Edgar Degas: Paintings That Dance: Paintings That Dance (Smart About Art) was no different! These books are written from the point of view of a child doing a book report on their favourite artist.They have lots of information and pictures and unusual snippets about the artists life. We love the series!

Although Edgar was friends with artists like Monet, Cassatt and van Gogh, he was not fond of painting outdoors and would gather all his sketches and pictures and paint in his studio. He captured pictures on canvas from the most interesting angles, and some of his paintings made us feel as if we were in the audience! My children loved his free brush strokes and commented on his use of pastels and beautiful colours.

Degas, Edgar Degas, art appreciation for children, art activities for children, art appreciation

Although we mainly focused on his paintings of ballerinas and theatre scenes, we did look at a few of his paintings of horse races and people too.

Degas, Edgar Degas, art appreciation for children, art activities for children, art appreciation

I Dreamed I Was a Ballerina was a book that we found at the library, which is the life story of Anna Pavlova told with pictures painted by Degas. It is one of those books where you ponder over each picture- whenever we see it at the library, we take it out! Anna Pavlova describes her first trip to the ballet to see Sleeping Beauty and tells her mother that she is going to dance on stage like that one day! It is told in a simple and beautiful way.

That led us down a rabbit trail to do a little research on Anna Pavlova, who was apparently the inspiration for one of our famous traditional deserts here! When she arrived here in Australia, a chef created a meringue pudding in her honour!

You can read all about the controversy over the pavlova and find a link to a recipe for this delicious meringue dish here. We spent an afternoon doing pastel drawings of ballerinas and listening to Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake in the background.

Degas, Edgar Degas, art appreciation for children, art activities for children, art appreciation

We ended off the term by going to see a Russian ballet company perform Sleeping Beauty, which was a lovely end to our unit.

Degas, Edgar Degas, art appreciation for children, art activities for children, art appreciation

We will have to revisit this artist again at some point!

Degas, Edgar Degas, art appreciation for children, art activities for children, art appreciation

Below is a selection of our favourite books and puzzles that we enjoyed along with a few comments about each resource.

Have fun :-)!

Back to Art Appreciation from Degas



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