Art Portraits From The Past

July 29th, 2006 by ClickSchooling Leave a reply »

Recommended Website:
Face2Face: Portraits from the Past

When you get to the site, you will immediately begin to read a story about a character who has activated a time machine that has brought people from famous art portraits to the present. Your job is to help get these people back to their own time. You do that by investigating the painting they came from, and entering information about it (everything from the history of the period to the artistic medium employed to create the portrait) into a time machine control panel that will appear at the bottom of your screen as you move through the activity.

NOTE: Avoid clicking on the rainbow colored menu bar on the screen as you move through the story — it takes you to other parts of this immense website – that have nothing to do with this story. (You can always explore the menu bar when you are through with this activity.)

There are 12 famous portraits to choose from as you try to match the people out of time with the correct portrait. You’ll discover works by artists such as Piero della Francesca, Marsden Hartley, and Dorothea Lange. You won’t believe the detailed information you will learn about the artists, the era, the history, the techniques used to create the work, and much more. Not only that, but a comparison of that work with others is among the strategies available here, providing a remarkable art history learning experience.

While the story is written to appeal to elementary grade children, the detail provided as you investigate the artwork is more suited to middle school aged students and beyond. Parents will need to explore the site with younger children to help them maneuver through the text to play the game and enter facts into the “time machine control panel.” Allow about an hour the first time you visit the site — it provides incredible art content and is a fun and excellent use of the Internet to promote art education.


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