For millennia, philosophers have considered the question of who we are. At Rivers, students are encouraged to explore this age-old inquiry through artistic lenses. Middle School art teacher Chris Love uses art projects and skill-building exercises to plumb the depths of student identity and build appreciation for artistic techniques.
“Over the years, I have seen too many students edit their personal story based on what they think others want to see,” says Love. “My goal is to use art to help students learn to see themselves more clearly.”
Love starts the year by instructing students to draw self-portraits that include a line down the middle of the page that separates their summer self from their school self. Asking the students to depict the components of their “twin” selves in as much detail as they can helps them start to see the difference between who they are and who they might think they are. As the students work, Love instructs them on the use of line and color in their drawings and how to use visual cues and symbols to convey meaning.