Showing examples of artists’ work is a great way to get the creative fire burning under the seats of your students. Ironically, searching for the right images by spending hours on Google or sifting through Pinterest is like a bucket of cold water over a teacher’s head. However, there is a site that might be the waterproof match you’ve been looking for: art2day.
At first glance it doesn’t look like much. No “About ” page explaining why the site exists or telling you what to do. The opening page only consists of a few inspirational looking, but rather innocuous quotes like “Let’s change art education forever”. Scrolling down, however, does give you some insight as to what lies beyond the front page; a Pinterest-like layout of contemporary artworks.
Click over to the Artist Search page, and the power of this site is revealed. A list of concepts like “contrast”, “identity” and “portraits” is provided. Having recently assigned a project on “text”, I was curious to see what would be revealed by clicking that word. The search returned approximately 30 contemporary artworks, many that I would have shared with my class. On the down side, the site offered no further levels. If I wanted to learn more about a particular work or artist I would be on my own, swimming the Google pool, at least for this section.
The next two tabs, Photography and Fine Art provided much more depth. These top level menus divide into sub categories including Digital, Film, Photoshop, etc.. And Paint, Sculpture, Mixed Media, etc., respectfully. These sub pages list artists alphabetically and many, though not all, provide links for more information.
Other sections include a What’s New page, which is sheer eye candy offering no detailed explanations, but image after image of enticing contemporary art. There is also a Lesson Ideas page containing a thin collection of interesting lesson possibilities, but no formal lesson plans.
Overall what the site is lacking in descriptions, it makes up for in visuals. This site is worth a first stop in your contemporary art search. I would also recommend the “What’s New” page as a talking point for class discussions.
Do you think art2day would be a good resource for your classroom?
Where else do you look for reference photos?
Do you often find what you’re looking for, or is the process frustrating for you?