A short history of Modern Art

Our 4-6 art classes these days enjoy learning about important movements in art history, while also trying to connect their projects to the many different topics in the curriculum.

Symbolism: Gustav Klimt

How can art reflect the children’s classwork on poetry, simile and metaphor? In fact, many of the ideas found in creative writing are also present in visual art, and Klimt’s breathtaking portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer transforms her into a glittering, mythical goddess.


In our unit on Surrealism, children discovered that the movement’s dream-like images were strongly influenced by Sigmund Freud’s development of psychoanalysis, which the kids had learnt about while studying sciences.

Many of the children produced paintings based on famous works by the Belgian artist René Magritte, while some of the older students created their own compositions inspired by other leading surrealists, such as Frida Kahlo, Leonora Carrington and Salvador Dalí.


Colour theory! The Fauve painters used scientific knowledge of colour to create bright, vivid paintings, and this project was designed to support the related work on light and optics which the kids were doing with the class teachers.

The older children created their own vibrant compositions, while the younger kids produced fruit paintings in two resonant complementary colours.

So what’s next? Frau Dunzer, Frau Pakhuylu and Miss McEvoy have many more exciting topics planned for future weeks… get ready for some fantastic interpretations of Cubism, Expressionism and Pop Art!