Aztec Art

Post by Jesse Boone

As most of you know I like to expose students to other cultures through art.  Currently my student studied the Mayan and Aztec Cultures.  Focusing on their achievements such as the calendar, number system and glyphs.  I took this opportunity to introduce shape and form into the student’s art vocabulary.  We looked at various reproductions of Aztec work, discovering that the designs were not literal and very stylized.

Even though Aztec art was designed to send a message, document an event or worship the gods. Students discovered that not every shape or drawing within their art was meant to be a symbol, but rather used as decoration to complete the composition.

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Students were asked to create a mural using both Aztec symbology and current symbology.  They were also encouraged to create a symmetrical design.  I reminded them that they were drawing a message.

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In the process, students learned the difference between organic and geometric shape.  They used shading around the shapes to create the illusion of depth.

Overall the project was a success, students learned to use pictures and symbols as forms of communications, while having fun in the process.

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