Forces of Nature - San Diego International Airport + La Jolla Country Day School
Forces of Nature provides an opportunity for Middle School students to experience the concept of art-making as a planned, researched, and intricately executed academic discipline. For too long, K-12 arts education have focused on the fundamentals of art and principles of design without delving into art-making as a fully formed practice of developing ideas that are used to communicate an experience, subject, memory, feeling, or topic to a broader public. By providing young students with a glimpse of professional art practice through real-world execution of a proposed idea, they are able to experience how contemporary artists must utilize comprehension, communication, and analytical skills to assess how a project can be effective in translating its intended meaning to a broad audience.
Students photographing environments and being asked to pay close attention to colors, textures, line and shapes, reiterates the importance of slow observation and recontextualizing subject matter to establish a cohesive message or response to a question, prompt, or statement of interest. By immersing our students into field work, we are also asking them to call upon the research and data collection skills introduced in other classes including science and history. When asking students to compile and compose their photographic images into one large tableau, they are forced to consider the relationship between images and the introduction of juxtaposition. We encourage the English department to begin a dialogue around the integration of writing as a critical component of contemporary art making. Forces of Nature is asking students to contemplate descriptors of the natural environment by composing haikus that can be combined with the images to add an additional layer of depth.