Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Ugly Face Jugs

When visiting an art museum in Atlanta last summer, I came across a face jug.  
Many of them, actually.  Their stark expressions captured my attention and I just knew my kids would be intrigued. 
We watched an informative PBS History Detectives video , and after more research into these early 19th century folk art pieces, crafted by African American potters in the South, sixth graders embarked on their own version of these "Ugly Face Jugs".    While our art program includes three dimensional work at every grade level,  kids don't often have the opportunity to work with clay and so were introduced to clay construction techniques and skills such as working with slabs, slip and scoring. (We had just enough air dry clay to squeak through this project ....I was sweating it! )

Oh my gosh! The excitement, the focus, the concentration: an art teacher's dream come true.
Every minute of this lesson was rich with exploration, discovery, creativity, and a joy.  

Three eyes, each with a different expression. Two mouths. Picasso influence? 


  1. Another truly amazing experience of learning art history combined with designing their own clay constructions! Awesome work 6th graders - it is a joy to see your imaginative results in our art studio! Thank you to our outstanding art teacher.

  2. Bravo SJS Students! What beautiful (ugly) works of art!!!!