Art School

Expand/Collapse Art School


Art School is a KQED web video series that introduces contemporary artists who discuss their careers and intentions, then demonstrate hands-on techniques or concepts. Art School provides resources for learning how to break dance, draw comic strips, create animations, and much more. Empower folks of all ages to engage with contemporary art, and discover new ideas for creativity from a variety of professional artists through this fun and engaging series.

  • Elements of Art: Form

    Study up on the different ways visual artists create Form. Through the eye-fooling genre of Trompe L'oeil, we look at techniques artists use to transform shapes into forms.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Elements of Art: Shape

    Shape is one of the seven basic building blocks of art. Using still life paintings of fruit, we look into how artists create their individual style and develop a unique approach to making shapes.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Elements of Art: Line

    Line is one of the seven basic elements of art along with Shape, Form, Texture, Value, Space and Color. These are the building blocks of all art and are a good place to start when making, looking at or analyzing works of art. Brush up on your visual literacy as we breakdown the wide variety of lines that artists use. Through the lens of the self-portrait, we look at how line is a way for artists to express their individual style and also a tool to control the messages they wish to communicate.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Printmaking with Favianna Rodriguez

    Visual artist Favianna Rodriguez has become a national figure in the fight for immigration reform. Visit her West Oakland studio and listen in as she talks about her mix of art and activism. Rodriguez then guides us through two printing processes central to her work: linocuts and monotypes.

    Grades: 6-12
  • The Art of the Skratch: DJs Celskiii + Deeandroid

    Meet hip-hop DJs Celskiii + Deeandroid in their Vallejo studio. They discuss their Bay Area influences, the importance of the audience, and why vinyl LPs still reign supreme. Then, learn four beginning skratches that all aspiring turntablists should know. DJ Celskiii and DJ Deeandroid guide you through the basic movements and techniques to get you started mixing and skratching.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Multimedia Performance with Lenora Lee

    In this episode of Art School, tag along as Lenora and her dancers prepare for a series of performances at Asia Society in New York City. Hear about the genesis of her current multimedia performances and the impact the local Chinese community has had on her artistic practice. Then follow Lenora Lee as she leads you through some of the choreography from her performance The Escape. She developed this series of movements in collaboration with her dancers.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • App Art with Franky Aguilar

    Oakland’s Franky Aguilar is the artist behind the wildly popular mobile art apps CatWang, Snoopify, Ima Unicorn, and GifYogurt, to name a few. Inspired by street culture, candy colors, and Internet iconography like cats and pizza, Aguilar works with artists to create a user experience that is equally fun and creative.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Know Your Graffiti Vocab

    You may be well-versed in graffiti formats, but for those curious about the difference between a tag and a piece, or what it takes to make an enormous spray can painting, we asked graffiti artist Neon to describe the five different types of graff on the streets. Knowing these terms can help you evaluate, critique and appreciate the graffiti in your neighborhood.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Bay Area Graffiti: The Early Days

    In this video learn about the pioneers of Bay Area graffiti, the most popular places to paint, and the styles that originated locally. Also learn about the PBS film Style Wars, which had a big impact on artists around the country.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Experimental Animation and Abstraction with Jodie Mack

    Jodie Mack is an experimental animator who makes colorful, abstract films with a vintage Bolex film camera. Tag along as she works on a new project in San Francisco and talks about her process.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Olek Covers the World in Crochet

    Go behind the scenes with Olek as she crochets an entire room - floor to ceiling - for her exhibit at White Walls Gallery and discusses her artistic path, process and intentions.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Gifs + Videos = Zeega

    Zeega is a new platform for organizing media from around the Internet to create interactive stories about anything in the world. From crazy cats to remixed popular film clips, Zeega enables users to practice craft of storytelling in a new, dynamic, digital way. In the latest episode of Art School, Zeega's creators talk about this new tool and the inspiration behind its name, then demonstrate how create your own Zeega using GIFs from the Internet, original content, music and text.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Drawing From American Hip-Hop and Iranian Culture with Ala Ebtekar

    Ala Ebtekar experiments with different art forms and has been inspired by literary narratives since he was very young. He grew up as a graffiti writer and DJ, and later pursued painting studies in Iran. Working with both a Persian miniature painter who created illuminated manuscripts, as well as an Iranian coffee house painter, he was influenced by these distinct styles.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Americana Music with American Nomad

    American Nomad is a band that keeps Americana music alive by mixing contemporary and traditional approaches. Join them as they share their approach to songwriting, recording and performing.

    Grades: 6-13+
  • Music for Social Justice with Aisha Fukushima

    In these Art School videos meet "Raptivist" Aisha Fukushima, who creates music that promotes social justice and travels the world, collaborating with a global network of hip hop artists. Artist Aisha Fukushima then demonstrates basic stomp rhythms, showing how she integrates that style of percussion with her vocals to create a spoken word performance.

    Grades: K-13+
  • Stencils on the Street with Mike Shine

    Mike Shine’s interests range from surfing to carnivals, and his dynamic approach to art making manifests as immersive installations, which he’s created throughout the Bay Area at local museums, galleries, and even at his home in Bolinas, “The Shine Shack.” In this media gallery, visit the Shine Shack and get a primer on stencil-making, and learn about Shine's style, and his history of working with stencils, which are one of the most accessible tools for creating a message and spreading it (or spray painting it) widely.

    Grades: K-13+
  • All About Opera with Jennifer Cherest

    Meet opera singer Jennifer Cherest, an award-winning soprano who has performed at an array of opera companies in this media gallery from Art School produced by KQED. Jennifer discusses her approach to singing, and her connection to pop singers like Christina Aguilera and Mariah Carey. Jennifer is part of the San Francisco Opera's Adler Fellowship program, which is a two-year artist residency for the most advanced young artists. Jennifer demonstrates how she warms up her voice for a day of rehearsals or performances.

    Grades: K-13+
  • Animated Filmmaker Kirsten Lepore

    Kirsten Lepore is an artist and filmmaker who works with different animation techniques, including stop-motion animation and claymation. With these videos, learn more about the intentions behind her food-focused film, the unusual materials she works with to create her projects, and why she loves the laborious process of stop-motion animation. Lepore also demonstrates the basics of shooting a stop-motion animation film.

    Grades: 3-12
  • Illustrating Personal Stories with Wendy Macnaughton

    Wendy MacNaughton is an illustrator  who works on a variety of projects, including her "drawn journalism" publications, which she creates by spending a few weeks interacting with different communities. She draws people, interviews them, and listens to their stories, then compiles the information into a book or collection of drawings. One of her recent books is about the people of San Francisco Public Library's main branch. Her illustrations have been published in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and her newest project is a book called Lost Cat. She also demonstrates how to draw coffee cups and wine glasses. 

    Grades: 6-12
  • Museums Rule! Why do Art Museum Rules Exist?

    Before heading out on a museum field trip, check out this superhero-style Art School video produced by KQED, about museum rules and why they exist, which will help prepare anyone for a museum visit.

    Grades: K-13+

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