Michela Mansuino Featured

The Cultural Landscape:  Past, Present, and Future Artist Residency Program challenges students to consider the cultural landscape of the United States, from an historical and personal perspective. Students are asked to research and analyze recognized artworks that interpret aspects of the American Landscape in creative ways. Students benefit from drawing and painting demonstrations by the resident artist. They see how to plan through journaling, how to execute an artwork by building on sketches and underpaintings, and how to manipulate materials and tools to develop techniques that enhance the quality of their work.

After reviewing landscapes as signifiers of American culture in the past, present and future, students compose an original landscape painting representative of a particular time and place in the United States. They may choose to interpret a location with which they are familiar, one they have researched or one they imagine in the future. Under the direction of the resident artist, students work with acrylic paint on heavy weight paper to develop and practice appropriate skills and techniques aligned with the FCPS Visual Art Curriculum, including the use of atmospheric perspective, layering, and paint application techniques.

Students discuss how the American experience shapes the political, economic, and cultural landscape of the United States and how landscape paintings can convey a sense of place. They compose an artist’s statement compiled from their responses to question prompts on “Tickets to Leave” described at the close of each session. Cross curricular connections are made with the social studies curriculum.

For the culminating event, the paintings will be shown in an exhibition space and student artists will present their paintings and artist statements to an audience of guests, peers, and teachers at an opening reception.

Cultural Landscape: Past Present and Future
Arts Discipline
Visual Art
Cross Curricular Connections
Social Studies
7 & 8
Artist Statement
Through my art I see and understand the world around me and feel closer to understanding the meaning of life. For me the meaning of life is to acquire knowledge about what it means to be human and live in today’s world. As a teaching artist, I lead students to a deeper understanding of their place in the world.

In my practice, I engage in recording observations of my surroundings through journaling, a part of my idea development process. I am inspired by every day encounters with nature and interactions with the human condition. Through my art, I share my observations of the world with young artists which leads them to see the creative possibilities in making new connections to their environment and to develop their artistic skills.

By demonstrating my approach to drawing and painting, I am able to inspire students to embark on their own creative journey and, at the same time, instill within them confidence in their artistic abilities.
Artist Residency Goals
Theme: Sense of Place

Key Concepts:
• Time
• Location
• Atmosphere
• Relationships

Enduring Understandings:
• Visual Art can communicate a sense of time and place in a variety of formats including landscape.
• Time, location, atmosphere, and relationships work together to inform our sense of place.

Essential Questions:
• How can the essence of time and place be conveyed in an artwork?
• How do artists express perceptions of their sense of place?
• What are important components of landscape composition?
Expected Learning Outcomes
• Paint a landscape depicting a past, present or future interpretation of a place in the USA, you have researched or experienced. Options may include individual paintings or group murals.
• Write an artist’s statement about your cultural landscape.
• Share and discuss the artist’s statement in class.
• Present the artist’s statement with the painting at the exhibition and opening reception.
Residency Schedule
The Residency Program is planned for 7 sessions of 90 minutes in length followed by the culminating event. Additional sessions without the artist in residence may be needed to complete the artwork or mount the exhibition.

The number of classroom sessions and the time per session can be modified and still accomplish the residency objectives. The Resident Artist will work with the Fine Arts teacher to align the lessons based on the specific school’s needs and schedule.
Material and Supply Needs
Standard Materials: (provided by the school)
• Arches cold press watercolor paper 140 LB 22 X 31 inches or other appropriate substrates
• Acrylic paint
• Acrylic medium
• water containers
• assorted brushes
• Styrofoam dinner plates for mixing paint or other palette material
• sketch books
• pencils
• paper towels
• cutting tools
• glue or tape

Specialized Materials: (provided by the artist)
• Visuals
• Printed Tickets To Leave
Equipment and Technology Needs

Standard Equipment and Technology: (provided by the school)
• internet access / ability to research for students in the classroom
• LCD projector or smart board (with connection for Apple laptop)

Specialized Equipment and Technology: (provided by the artist)
• Apple laptop
• iPad

Space Requirements
• tables and chairs
• large drawing boards if available
• exhibition space
Role of the Fine Arts Teacher in the Residency
The Fine Arts Teacher may choose a focus for this residency: historical landscape, personal experience, imagined future or student choice among the three. They may also choose the project to be individual landscapes or group murals.

Acrylic paint and heavy weight watercolor paper is preferred but teachers may choose the type of paint and substrate that are available.

The Fine Arts Teacher is asked to collaborate with the resident artist to support and enhance the program on an ongoing basis throughout the residency, including but not limited to the following:
• Suggestions for student groupings,
• Classroom discussions and examples,
• Opening and closing activities or successful teaching methods students are familiar with,
• Providing feedback/input/encouragement into the creative processes planned as part of the classroom activities, and
• Adaptations for students with special needs.