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MFA for Educators

Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

"Getting" Contemporary Art

This Unit is meant to help build a bridge between the artworks which students often have some level of confidence talking about (Ancient Egypt & the Renaissance, for example) and works one might find in a Modern or Contemporary gallery at the MFA. The image gallery consists of both singular and comparison slides paired with suggested guided questions that should provoke conversation and encourage students to think more abstractly about the work they see.

National Visual Art Standards Content Standard #4:

Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures

Achievement Standard: Students know and compare the characteristics of artworks in various eras and cultures

Students describe and place a variety of art objects in historical and cultural contexts

Students analyze, describe, and demonstrate how factors of time and place (such as climate, resources, ideas, and technology) influence visual characteristics that give meaning and value to a work of art.

Massachusetts Art Standards

6.3 Interpret the meanings of artistic works by explaining how the subject matter and/or form reflect the events, ideas, religions, and customs ofpeople living at a particular time in history

6.4 Describe how artistic production can shape and be influenced by the aesthetic preferences of a society

Created By

Siobhan McDonald


History/Social Studies, The Arts

Grade Level

6-8, 9-12

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