Renaissance Art for the underage--OT
- Off topic, but people here will know...
I teach middle school. My kids are currently struggling through the
Renaissance. I found a cool activity I can modify for my English Language Learner crew,
where you look at classical, medieval and Renaissance art to see the
differences and similarities, and pick out themes.
The problem: naked people. The classical and Renaissance stuff offered by the
curriculum I found is full of NAKED PEOPLE. (Yes, duh, but there it is.) Bare
bottoms. Breasts. Full frontal male nudity. A beautiful Roman statue of
Venus, wearing nothing at all, coyly covering her nipples.
The activity was written for middle school students, but they must have been
more mature middle school students than mine, in a school district more
relaxed than mine. Some of this I can fix--they can look at the David from the hips
up and still ge the idea, hell, I could put shorts on him and make it a
joke--but does anyone have pointers to online photos of
a. Classical sculpture showing natural realistic human figures with clothes
b. Renaissance art on classical themes where people have clothes on?
The clothes do not need to be all-encompassing, just enough that you could
sunbathe in public in them and not be arrested.
The medieval stuff is great. We have a chunk of the Bayeux Tapestry, and a
Cimabue altarpiece, and everyone has CLOTHES on. Lots of clothes. It's very
I just don't have the energy to send letters home saying I want to show naked
men in class, then deal with screaming when they actually see a painted
backside or worse, a bronze willy.
(Raquel never has trouble like this. She only teaches the smallest boys, and
once they learn the alef-bet and how to read the prayerbook, they're off to
real school. When the girls ask about sex in their Bible class, she tells them.
Why not? They'll be getting married in a few years, they should know. Another
time, another place...)
- There's always the Doryphoros (Greek, 450 B.C.) although the figure
is naked, he does have the proverbial fig leaves in the front.
Failing that, Roman stuff generally has people clothed if they're
politicians or secular leaders, such as this one of Augustus
or this one of the imperial family
For paintings and such, Pompeii has some good selections of
clothed people, such as family and street scenes.
As for renaissance, try artists like Van Der Veden, Durer, and
Lippi. Of course, most artists have nudes at some point in their
career, but if you do a basic google image search, you're sure to
find some scenes from everyday life or biblial scenes of modest
people. Good luck!