SmARTt History: Art. History. Conversation
For high school students who are serious artists; those planning on going to art school or major in fine arts at a university there are very few serious art classes they can take at the high school level. In the past there have been AP Art History classes but they are now few and far between. As well, at the college level, the founders of this website state, "We are dissatisfied with the large expensive art history textbook. We find that they are difficult for many students, contain too many images, and just are not particularly engaging".
smARThistory attempts to overcome the founders issues with art history textbooks by creating a site that allows students to hear what experts have to say about specific pieces of art ranging from Ancient Cultures to the Post-Colonial Age. There is usually a small article accompanying the video 5-10 minutes long) and the public can make comments about the piece or the commentary.
As a classroom resource high school teachers can use this site as a way to introduce students to important pieces of art that they may not be able to get visuals of otherwise. As well, for serious art students looking for an AP Art History course, this may be a way to build a curriculum.
Elective budgets are being slashed across the country. This resource is a nice way to continue to bring primary documents into an art classroom and helps to cover state standards for high school art classes. Students could do an exploration of a specific time period, could compare pieces and materials used from different time periods or artists and, along the way, be introduced to famous works that they may otherwise, never see.