FRESH EYES: TES students take in international art

Published 4:00 am Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Fifth-grade art students at Troy Elementary School started their week off with an international art experience on Monday.

Jennifer Lindsey’s art students visited the International Art Center at Troy University and then walked a short distance across campus to the Confucius Institute.

Lindsey said the students first toured the three exhibitions at the IAC, Madison Faile’s “Prodigal Son,” in the Huo Bao Zhu Gallery, the Nall Hollis Museum featuring the work at Troy native Nall Hollis and The Art of Art Bacon in the lobby exhibition space.

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The exhibits were vastly different and Lindsey said the students enjoyed them all, but they were especially intrigued by Nall’s artwork.

“They loved the detail of Nall’s work,” she said. “They looked at it very closely and pointed out details that I had not noticed. It was exciting for them.”

Carrie Jaxon, IAC curator, said the students were also fascinated by Nall’s big, bold and colorful art.

“They pointed out things that I had not noticed,” she said. “They were seeing his work with different eyes and I enjoyed seeing his work through their eyes.”

The fifth-graders then attended a printmaking demonstration and had an opportunity to make their own prints by “etching” their designs in paper and then applying black ink over the design, leaving their etchings white. They then “printed” the image on paper, signed it and took their prints home as souvenirs of their visit to the IAC.

The students visited the Confucius Institute located in historic Bibb Graves Hall.
“There, they were given a tour of the Confucius Institute and learned about the Chinese culture – their dress, their music, their customs,” Lindsey said. “They got to see the dragon custom up close. It was a good learning experience for them.”

The students were treated to a video about the black and white pandas often used as the emblem of China. Pandas live nowhere else in the world outside captivity.

Linda Cao, Confucius Institute visiting scholar, challenged the fifth-graders to draw a panda using a step-by-step tutorial.

The final activity at the Confucius Institute was paper cutting, which Cao said is a very old art and is done by folding and cutting paper. Following Cao’s instructions, the students folded sheets of colored paper and then using Cao’s chart and instructions, created art by cutting paper.

But that was not the final art experience of the day. After lunch, the students took a walking trip to see the Terra Cotta Warriors and were “fascinated” by the life-size replicas, Jaxon said.

“Today was the second group to participate in a field trip to the IAC and they said it was ‘the best day ever,’” Jaxon said. “This was a wonderful opportunity for these students to see, firsthand, different types of art and to experience a different culture. It was also an opportunity for them to visit the Troy University campus. It’s good for students to have hands-on experiences outside the classroom. We are planning more workshop field trips for students and are looking forward to those opportunities.”