Expressionistic Faces/figures (g11&12)

As we end our year together, some of you will be transitioning into their graduating year, and those graduating this year will be leaving JO, this warm and fuzzy high school environment, and entering the ‘real’ world.

And, as you glimpse this world, through the news, social media, and the voices of those close to you, I am going to simply ask you to examine how you’re feeling about the world you are inheriting.  What’s going right, what’s going wrong… what upsets you the most?

Now please understand that I’m not suggesting that you’re walking around all consumed with gut-wrenching, all-consuming, phobias and disorders- no, (if you are please tell me… there IS help) but I would suspect, every other person on this planet has a normal level of anxiety about your future.

Artists have always used their aesthetic voice, their work, to try and show, talk about and change the world around them.  In this project I’m not really concerned about the issues… no, I’m concerned with how you will deal with the pressures, anxiety, fear, and isolation that these issues create in you, on your psyche.

Definition of psyche

1capitalized : a princess loved by Cupid

2[Greek psychē]

a: SOUL, PERSONALITYthe nation’s consumer psyche— D. J. Kevles
b: the totality of elements forming the mind.
2)specifically, in Freudian psychoanalytic theory: the id, ego, and superego including both conscious and unconscious components
Sometime back in the 16th century, we borrowed the word psyche directly from Greek into English. In Greek mythology, Psyche was a beautiful princess who fell in love with Eros (Cupid), god of love, and went through terrible trials before being allowed to marry him. The story is often understood to be about the soul redeeming itself through love. (To the Greeks, psyche also meant “butterfly”, which suggests how they imagined the soul.) In English, psyche often sounds less spiritual than soul, less intellectual than mind, and more private than personality.

(Text source


I Googled “The world I live in“ to see what I can find and I came across a book by  Helen Keller, no relation to me, a this video b Maggie Huang.

Moving forward from the portrait work we have been doing, from realistic to a more abstract approach, we will start for working on a LARGE portrait based on YOU and Expressionism.


German Expressionism, let’s, take a look at some images 
Video on Expressionism
Expressionism developed during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Expressionism was opposed to academic standards that had prevailed in Europe and emphasized artist’s subjective emotion, which overrides fidelity to the actual appearance of things. The subjects of expressionist works were frequently distorted, or otherwise altered. Landmarks of this movement were violent colors and exaggerated lines that helped contain intense emotional expression. Application of formal elements is vivid, jarring, violent, or dynamic. Expressionist were trying to pinpoint the expression of inner experience rather than solely realistic portrayal, seeking to depict not objective reality but the subjective emotions and responses that objects and events arouse in them.
The expressionistic tradition was significantly, rose to the emergence with a series of paintings of Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh from the last year and a half of his life. There was recorded his heightened emotional state. One of the earliest and most famous examples of Expressionism is Gogh’s “The Starry Night.” Whatever was cause, it cannot be denied that a great many artists of this period assumed that the chief function of art was to express their intense feelings to the world.
The Belgian painter and printmaker James Ensor was such an artist – with his sense of isolation.
The Norwegian painter and printmaker Edvard Munch dealt – with different fears.
The Vienesse painters Oskar Kokoschka and Egon Schiele first started with their expressionistic styles within Klimt’s circle of the Vienna Secession. Vienesse Expressionism later gained significance between years 1905 and 1918 during a politically and culturally turbulent era of revelation of the profoundly problematic conditions of the turn-of-the-century Europe.
In the years just around 1910 the expressionistic approach pioneered by Ensor, Munch, and van Gogh, in particular, was developed in the work of three artists’ groups: the Fauves, Die Brucke, Der Blaue Reiter.
here’s one idea:

You can base this portrait on yourself and something you experienced.  Or something emotional that you witnessed.  We will be working on 18×24″ black paper.  You might want to start in pencil/pencil crayons but you will most likely get the BEST results if you complete the work in oil pastel.



  • Re-read the introduction and think about what it means to you. Remember Expresionissm saw itself as a bridge between the old and new
  • Think about the world you live in, the transition from HS to the ‘real world’, and what brings you anxiety, and fear.  Then sit back and relax- and ask yourself How did the Anxiety and fear manifest themselves in your mind and body?
  • Think about mapping them out
  • Think about how you looked while this was going on
  • Can you make Art from this?


  • Sketches/Writing.  or Writing/sketches
  • A proposal of work includes:
    • Medium
    • Size of work
    • number of pieces
    • A paragraph on what you are trying to achieve/say through your work.
  • Submission of final work



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