Grade 5 – Modigliani Portraits

20150610_114242The awesome thing about working with kids is how they suprise you. When you give them a task you have certain expectations of them and it’s amazing how time after time they will blow these expectations out of the water!


This project was originally introduced by one of our Belgian student teachers. The task was to do a self-portrait in Modigliani’s strange style. When the kids first saw Modigliani’s pictures they weren’t impressed. They laughed and joked at the strange, elongated faces, calling them giraffe people. When they actually started working on their own versions they found the process fun and freeing! Each learner was given a mirror so they could see what of themselves to include. The student teacher also showed them some of the characteristics of Modigliani as well as (when it came to this) how to effectively use pastels, combining interesting colour combinations to make up the basic skin colour.

20150610_114300The learners loved this project! They all worked at different speeds, one or two finishing quite quickly while others took their time. In general it took 2-3 periods however.

As the pictures of the kids show, they were inspired! I had kids who don’t normally do that well at art produce masterpieces!

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