"Teaching of the Arts"
Among the many WPA funded artworks at the school is this four-panel fresco in the school auditorium “Teaching of the Arts” pained by Mitchell Siporin in 1938. Each panel is 15′ x 3’6.”
From A Guide to Chicago’s Murals (2001): “Four vertical panels mounted between the exterior doors of the Lane Tech auditorium describe the teaching of the humanities. They were painted when the school was all male. In each, Mitchell Siporin portrays the figure of a mentor or teacher standing behind that of a young student. For literature, a wise-looking older man with his arm outstretched gently leads a young man with book in hand. Art is suggested by a student holding a palette and painting a still life at his easel. His teacher stands behind him with his arm on the young man’s shoulder. A young man performing on his violin accompanied by a shadowy figure at the piano personifies music. In the fourth panel, a boy in Elizabethan costume is embraced by a figure in classical robes representing drama. In acknowledging the influence of the Mexican muralists José Clemente Orozco, Diego Rivera, and David Alfaro Siqueiros on his work, Siporin said, ‘Through the lessons of our Mexican teachers, we have been made more aware of the scope and fullness of this the soul of our own environment.’ It was they, he said, who suggested ‘the application of modernism toward a socially moving epic of our time and place.'”
Copyright notice: Excerpted from A Guide to Chicago’s Murals by Mary Lackritz Gray, published by the University of Chicago Press. ©2001 by the University of Chicago. All rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of U.S. copyright law, and it may be archived and redistributed in electronic form, provided that this entire notice, including copyright information, is carried and provided that the University of Chicago Press is notified and no fee is charged for access. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the consent of the University of Chicago Press.
Mary Lackritz Gray, 2001. A Guide to Chicago's Murals, Chicago: University of Chicago Press Originally posted in the New Deal Art Registry: http://www.newdealartregistry.org/
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