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Visual Art and Society

Seminar Leader:
Edward Epstein


Visual art can often seem like an island within the world of primary and secondary education. The subject is useful, perhaps, as a break from ordinary academic subjects; for some students, it may be the only constructive outlet for otherwise untapped talents. Yet its relevance in the universe of knowledge is not well known. I designed the seminar “Visual Art and Society” to address the problem of visual art’s apparent remoteness: to know that art is, in fact, intimately tied to a broad range of subjects, including math, science, history, and social science. The goal of the seminar was to prompt each participant to see how his or her discipline may have been influence by, or had an influence on, painting, sculpture, graphic design, and a variety of other visual media.

Unit TitleAuthor


The Art of Computer Animation and the Mathematics that Moves It

Cara Crosby
Keywords: animation, computer animation, mathematics, programming

Common Threads: Time and Textile

Pamela Toller
Keywords: Art, beliefs, Culture, Navajo, student awareness, symbolism, textile construction, traditions, weaving

Could We Learn Peace by Doing a Piece?

Kathryn Long
Keywords: design, discovery, History, murals, Philadelphia murals

Cultural Infusion: the Public Art of Philadelphia’s Chinatown

Maxine J. Tumaian
Keywords: Art, chinatown, Chinese, Chinese immigration, community, Dragon Mural, Philadelphia

The Impact of Advertising on Teenagers

Jacquelyn Massey
Keywords: advertising, advertising agencies, advertising strategies, business, communication, computer technology, graphic art

Langston Hughes, Romare Bearden and Comrades: Countering Negative Stereotypes through African American Arts Communities

Barbara McDowell Dowdall
Keywords: African American Artists, Art, Harlem Renaissance, Philadelphia, Visual Art

Linguistic meanings through figurative language in Langston Hughes’s poetry, Faith Ringgold’s quilts/textiles and Romare Bearden’s collages

Kemo Logan
Keywords: African American History, American History, Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes, Romare Bearden

Visual Arts in Society: We Wear the Mask –Visual Arts and Literacy Project

Samuel A. Reed, III

“What Goes Around Comes Around: Body Painting /Tattooing in Societies Past and Present”

Sheila White

The Influence of Music Television on Behaviors and Social Identities

Marsha A. Walker