Grade: Sixth Grade lesson: Egyptian Art vocabulary



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MASTERPIECE: Mask of King Tutankhamen

ARTIST: 18th Dynasty Egyptian Artist (Unknown)

CONCEPT: Decorative Mummy Case

GRADE: Sixth Grade

LESSON: Egyptian Art

VOCABULARY: Line, Pattern, Color, Contrast

MATERIALS:

  1. 1 copy of mummy outline paper per student

  2. Pastels

  3. Gold acrylic paint

  4. Black markers

  5. 12 inch by 18 inch construction paper, cut down to 10 ½ by 16 ½ inches

ABOUT THE WORK:

Tutankhamen’s name meant “the living image of the sun god.” He became King of Egypt when he was nine years old, and he ruled from 1361 – 1352 B.C., over 3,000 years ago. King Tut was 18 years old when he died. It was originally believed that he was killed, but findings now show that he may have died of gangrene caused by a broken leg.

Ancient Egyptians believed in the afterlife and they made careful preparations for it. Work began for King Tut’s death the day he was made king. His image was carved out of stone and wood and shaped out of gold sheets. His tomb was built with a burial chamber and extra rooms to house things needed in the next life – clothing, jewelry, furniture and objects for protection.

Tut’s tomb was discovered in 1922 – the first in modern times that had not been vandalized. The most spectacular discovery in the tomb was the funeral mask, which bore an exact likeness of the king. It is made of solid gold and weighs about 22 pounds. Just above the eyebrows on the head piece is a gold serpent on the left and a gold vulture on the right, representing sacred goddesses. It is decorated with semi-precious stones and colored glass. They eyes are made of quartz and obsidian. The color is encrusted with various kinds of semi-precious jewels and bordered with a lotus bud design. A gold vulture sits on each of his shoulders.



Possible Questions

This mask was created by a craftsman over 3,000 years ago. Think about whether art created that long ago can be judged by the same rules as the art of today. What do you think?



PATTERNS (a repeated element or design) are important in the composition of this mask. Define the term “pattern” and identify what the pattern is in the mask. Answer: This mask has alternating stripes of gold and blue glass, bands of gold and colored stones and glass on the collar, repeated designs on the vulture, serpent and beard.

Which elements are prevalent in the mask? The patterns all over the mask were created by LINES. Some of the lines are wide (on the headpiece), while some are thin (the space between the stones and the collar).



COLOR is a strong component in the bright and luminous gold, the vivid blue and the various colors of gemstones.

Imagine that you have the mask in your hands. How would it feel? The face would be hard and smooth, the headpiece and collar bumpy with ridges.



Are there any areas of CONTRAST? The blue and gold stripes on the headpiece, the smooth gold bands between the rows of stones on the collar, the dark eyes and the light face.

Activity: Decorative Mummy Case

Process:

  1. Have students design a mummy case. White is effective for the face, although in ancient Egypt, men were often depicted as brown and woman yellow.

  2. Use the black marker to outline the eyes, the shape of the headdress, the decorative beard and the facial expression.

  3. For the overall look, the students will want to decide on the design of the case. Emphasize the importance of color and pattern. They may want to start with bands of outlines, into which the design elements are arranged. Here is where they use their imagination to add symbols and other imagery (what is important to their lives now versus what was important to the pharaohs – for example iPods, footballs, etc.).

  4. Have the students use a combination of pastels and gold paint to color their mummy and create the patterns.

  5. Cut out the mummy and glue it onto a sheet of brown construction paper.

  6. Have them sign their artwork!

Art Masterpiece – September – Mask of King Tut

Sixth Grade

Today your 6th grader participated in Art Masterpiece and discussed the Death Mask of King Tutankamen of ancient Egypt. The mask weighs 22 lbs and is over 3000 years old. It is made of solid gold. We learned about color, contrast and patterns. Often the death masks had symbols on them to represent things that were important to that person. Your 6th grader created a mummy case and incorporated color, contrast and patterns as well as symbols into their design to represent things that were important to them.



Art Masterpiece – September – Mask of King Tut

Sixth Grade

Today your 6th grader participated in Art Masterpiece and discussed the Death Mask of King Tutankamen of ancient Egypt. The mask weighs 22 lbs and is over 3000 years old. It is made of solid gold. We learned about color, contrast and patterns. Often the death masks had symbols on them to represent things that were important to that person. Your 6th grader created a mummy case and incorporated color, contrast and patterns as well as symbols into their design to represent things that were important to them.


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