We believe art is a fundamental and natural part of the human experience, that all children have a
natural curiosity and instinct for creative expression, and that art is an experience to be lived and shared. The children at City and Country "make art" rather than "do projects," and the process of using art materials is the focus of the Art Program.
Art is a daily activity in the Lower School classrooms, where children have access to paint, clay, paper, collage and drawing materials. They become familiar with the properties of these materials while they experiment and work. In the 6s, the children begin to go to the art room each week. They already have substantial experience in the creative process and are eager to learn about the new materials and techniques that await them. Clay and paint remain the basic materials used by the older children, with new media introduced as the children are ready. These include linoleum blocks, scratchboards, collage materials of all sorts, plaster, metal, chalks, inks, charcoal, precision drawing implements, and watercolors. As their clay work progresses, it is glazed and fired in the kiln.
As a Special, art is integrated with the Social Studies and Jobs Programs for all Middle and Upper School Groups, providing a wealth of artistic possibilities as children explore different cultures and time periods. Native American drawings, sculpted gargoyles, and oil
paintings, for example, provoke discussion about the cultural forces that spawned these forms and experimentation with the artistic techniques involved. Following historic developments, children are introduced to an increasing number of materials, tools and techniques. For example, they will explore mural-making when they learn about Aztec mural design or the construction of stained glass during their study of the Middle Ages. Throughout their years at City and Country, personal expression is encouraged as it develops alongside the children’s group explorations.
In the 12s and 13s, Art becomes an elective choice that meets twice weekly for an hour. Students who choose the Art Elective may concentrate on the fine arts or film and video. Each of these classes culminate in two annual art exhibits of the children’s work.
The Afterschool Program provides additional opportunities to Middle and Upper School students to continue working on an art piece begun during the regular school day, or to try out a new art medium.