Students will visit the Yale University Art Gallery to view the civil war photographs of Timothy O'Sullivan, Alexander Gardner, George Bernard, and Mathew B. Brady. These works are not on permanent display, and an appointment must be made with the Prints and Drawings department to view the photographs. This work is also not on display, and an appointment must be made for students to view the print. Students should work in pairs or in groups of three to discuss the documents and artwork and then determine whether and how they reveal, criticize or correctly report the events that they represent.
For each of the images, students should go through the Describe–Analyze–Interpret–Judge exercise.
Rebel Works in front of Atlanta
, GA 1864–1865, George N. Barnard, American 1819–1902, 2003.107.1 Yale University Art Gallery
1. Describe – What do you see? What are the subject matter, medium, art style, and size?
2. Analyze –– How is the work organized as a complete composition? Name the Elements and Principles of Design?
3. Interpret –– What is happening in the artwork? How does it make you feel? What does the artwork make you think of?
4. Judge –– What was the artist trying to explain? The student will make inferences about the message in the work, going beyond narration.
Students will visit the Yale University Art Gallery to view the paintings of John Trumbull. These works are on permanent display in the Trumbull Gallery. Students should work in pairs or in groups of three to discuss the documents and artwork and then determine whether and how they reveal, criticize or correctly report the events that they represent. For each of the images, students should go through the Describe–Analyze–Interpret–Judge exercise.
Students should compare
Death of General Wolfe (after Benjamin West), after 1771
The Battle of Bunker's Hill, June 17, 1775
by John Trumbull. Both of these pieces are at the Yale University Art Gallery. Are there any comparisons between the two paintings? Using the Art History textbook,
Gardner's Art Through the Ages, 12
, find other paintings or images that John Trumbull could have used as a model for his painting.
Students should create a tableau of each of the paintings. This will reinforce how much each image is similar.
Students should compare Barnard's photograph
Rebel Works in front of Atlanta, GA,
and Winslow Homer's painting
In Front of Yorktown, probably 1863–66
. Both of these pieces are at the Yale University Art Gallery. These two images were created at about the same time. They both depict the Civil War. How are they similar? How are they different?
Students should each chose a photograph from a past war, World War I through Viet Nam, and a contemporary war photo from Iraq or Afghanistan. Compare the accuracy and validity of these images in comparison to the Civil War photographs. Discuss the changes in technology that have made these images possible.
All tenth grade students in Connecticut must pass the Connecticut Academic Proficiency Test (CAPT). One portion of this test is Reading for Information, which requires students to read three non–fiction articles and answer a combination of 12 multiple–choice and 6 open–ended questions. There are two types of open–ended questions: Developing and Interpretation and Demonstrating a Critical Stance. This activity will allow students to practice taking this type of test.
Students will read "Architect of the Capital, Declaration of Independence", and complete the following statements. The teacher should project the image of the painting if possible or show a print. This is article details John Trumbull's paintings in the Capitol rotunda in Washington, DC.
Demonstrating a Critical Stance:
1. The author assumes that the reader of this article already knows
a. what interred means.
b. how the Revolutionary war ended.
c. what the Declaration of Independence is.
d. all of the above.
2. Based on the information in the article, is it fair to assume that
a. Trumbull died a wealthy man.
b. the painting is an accurate account of the events.
c. Many people saw the painting before it was exhibited in the rotunda.
d. Trumbull should not have cleaned his painting.
Developing an Interpretation
3. Which of the following best describes the central idea of the article?
a. This painting is Trumbull's most famous piece.
b. Trumbull was not an accurate painter.
c. Trumbull lived an extravagant lifestyle.
d. It is Thomas Jefferson's fault the painting is not accurate.
4. The article implies that
a. painting from live models is best.
b. Trumbull made up all the events of the day.
c. Trumbull was trying to capture the spirit of the signing.
d. Thomas Jefferson should have been the only one in the painting.
1. How does the
Declaration of Independence
General George Washington Resigning His Commission?
2. Why does the author include the quotation, "When Trumbull was planning the smaller painting in 1786, he decided not to attempt a wholly accurate rendering of the scene; rather, he made his goal the preservation of the images of the Nation's founders. "?