Surrealism Is….

This is how Georgetown’s Fifth Graders describe Surrealism: kind of creepy.  Sort of silly.  Like the strangest dream you’ve ever had. Unreal.  Bizarre. Fantastic.  Odd.  Sweet but…strange.

They created surreal portraits after viewing the work Surreal artist Salvadore Dali.

url Salvadore Dali

imgres Dali’s well-known “Persistence of Memory”

Check out their sort of sweet, sort of creepy Surreal portraits!

IMG_8204 IMG_8203 IMG_8202 IMG_8201

IMG_8497 IMG_8503 IMG_8516

I Can:

Explain the Surrealist art movement

Tell two facts about Salvadore Dali

Create a work of art based on Surrealism




Ketchup Time!

Georgetown’s fifth grade artists are completing two different art pieces this week.  We’ve gotten a little behind due to snow days and winter break, so we’ve been playing “Catch Up”…or as we say in the art room, Ketchup Time!


These fun and colorful villages are inspired by the work of Austrian architect and artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser.

IMG_5750 IMG_5751

Take a peek at this fun video to see Hundertwasser’s work….my 5th graders are still asking to watch the video, but I suspect it is partly because of the music that goes along with it!

Fifth graders have also been getting a kick out of their Salvadore Dali “Vase or Face” pieces.  Which is it…vase or face?

Facevase  This famous optical illusion became the basis for their own surreal vase/face pieces, complete with symbols often used by Salvador Dali himself – ants, eyes, and floating watches.  It has been fun to see how my students interpret the Surrealist art movement and integrate the dreamlike, slightly uncomfortable images of Surrealism into their own pieces.

IMG_5844 IMG_5853 IMG_5857 IMG_5863


See more Hundertwasser and Vase/Face pieces at our ARTSONIA online art gallery!

Learning Goals:  *Identify the work of Hundertwasser and Dali *Name two facts about both artists *Create an architectural drawing in the style of Hundertwasser *Identify elements of Surrealism including transformation and juxtaposition  *Create a Surreal drawing in the style of Dali


Get Surreal!

Fifth Grade artists recently learned about the Surreal artwork of a surreal guy…Salvadore Dali.  We’ve done lots of projects that focus on surrealism – see a few of them here:  Monster Mash , Dali’s Elephants , Surreal Lockers , and Salvadore Dali Portraits . 

This year we created a surreal room and filled it with floating objects cut from magazines.  Fifth graders were asked to consider four “surreal” guidelines in choosing and placing their objects:

* Laws of nature are reversed

* Use of Juxtaposition – two objects that normally wouldn’t be placed together

* Transformation – turning something familiar into something unusual

* Dislocation – objects placed where they would not normally be found

These guidelines really helped my fifth graders focus on their selection of pictures to add to their rooms.  We also watched parts of a great little video about surrealism: Get Surreal.


  Creating the surreal rooms

 Looking through magazines for just the right photo!




Salvador Dali Portraits

Fifth Graders are finishing up a great Salvador Dali project.  They loved learning about the Surrealists and talking about their own “surreal” dreams, and found Dali’s attention-grabbing moustache very hilarious.  After creating their portraits, they chose their own Dali-inspired backgrounds and pipe-cleaner moustache designs.

Dali’s Many Moustaches

This project is inspired by Anne at  .  Thanks, Anne,  for an awesome lesson idea – my kids loved it!

Dali’s Elephants

Fifth Graders are finishing up their study of Surrealist artist Salvadore Dali.  We read “Dali and the Path of Dreams” by Obiolis and Subirana – the pictures in the book are gorgeous and really helped my students understand Surrealism.

Dali & The Path Of DreamsMy 5th Graders were intrigued by the long-legged elephant images in the book – and so we had to draw them!

We drew the elephants together, one step at a time – and after a demonstration about value and shading, my students used oil pastel to blend and shade the elephant bodies.  Watercolor for the ground and sky completed their fabulous surreal landscapes.

Surreal Elephants

Surreal Elephants Surreal Elephants Surreal Elephant Surreal Elephant

I am also a new fan of the liquid watercolors that we used on the background – squirt a little of the concentrated watercolor in a dish, add water – viola!  Lots of watercolor for this big painting project!

Liquid Watercolors

What’s in YOUR locker??

When does the usual look UNUSUAL? When is something real but NOT REAL? Fifth Grade artists recently studied the Surrealism art movement and viewed the strange, dream-like art of Surrealist Salvadore Dali. Then we tried our hand at making the ordinary look strange in the Surrealist style; we took a little field trip to our lockers and drew the exterior of the locker, making sure to note every detail to make it look realistic. Then we brainstormed what could be inside our lockers that could look surprising, unusual, or odd. Our surreal lockers are now filled with swimming fish, Thanksgiving turkeys, Christmas trees (fully decorated!), space ships…very surreal!Drawing locker exteriorsdrawing lockers