Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Claire-obscure (Chiaroscuro) is a technique used by visual artists to highlight emotion and increase the sense of drama in a work of art. The technique involves making choices about the interplay of light and shadow and it is a distinguishing characteristic of paintings by Rembrandt Van Rijn. I learned this information from a fun lesson plan posted on the education website of the Discovery Channel.

The plan references
national standards for learning in the arts and helps students place the work of painter Rembrandt Van Rijn in historical context. Within the lesson, students "review important facts" about the painters life and "compare two of Rembrandt's self-portraits."

The website also provides handy links to images and background information on the artist provided by museums including the
National Gallery of Art and the Getty.

The image attached to this post is a Rembrandt self-portrait painted when he was 22 years old. Wow.

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