Discovering the Object

The Big Idea:

How do artists use everyday objects to explore the world around them?

Activity overview

Betye Saar and Edward Weston feature simple, everyday objects in their work, infusing those items with meaning and beauty. After studying these two artists in Voices and Images of California Art, you will select an everyday item to bring to class and exercise your powers of description.

Look closely

Click on each artist button at right to view detailed screens about the artist and his or her works. Be sure to click on all images, view all videos, read all documents, and use the zoom tool to look closely at the works of art.

In this activity you will:

  1. learn about modern artists and their use of everyday objects
  2. understand the various ways in which objects can be described
  3. write your own description of an object
  4. read your peers' descriptions and guess what their objects are

You will be graded on:

  1. creativity in choice of object
  2. effort invested in object description
  3. class participation