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Creative exploration of contemporary arts in the context of the spirit of our times, for Grades 5-11, ages 11-17 years

Research results indicate that students tend to feel closer to contemporary creators, who confront life issues similar to those of their own, then to artists of more remote cultural periods. Moreover, multimedia based art works can easily be approached in 21th century classrooms, because of the deep immersion of our students in digital culture, with online experiences often preceding those in real life. Therefore, our contemporary arts program introduces both traditional and digital works.

The opportunity for an in-depth, aesthetic encounter with social and environmental problems emphasizes the importance of contemporary art works. Therefore, our discipline, Visual Culture, becomes a special area of Critical Pedagogy, and contributes to the education of self-assured, well-informed and active citizens.  Teaching about the artists who live and work in our times, provides a unique opportunity for observing the creative process that gives shape to the spirit of the age (Zeitgeist), often before members of society become aware of it. An analysis of the form giving process of contemporary artists helps understand the phases of creation and enriches self-reflection.

Regrettably, contemporary arts are not allocated the space they deserve in curricula, and the limited amount of lesson hours makes it difficult to follow the path of artistic creation from ancient times to the present day. In addition, teaching aids and good practice descriptions are rare and hard to find, so this unchartered educational territory is left undiscovered by many art educators. In the followings, we briefly describe the aims and methods of our module, detailed in its Teachers’ Manual, available in Hungarian on this website, along with a rich collection of tried and tested learning programs.


Developmental objectives

  • Emphatic understanding the individual, social and environmental  issues of our times

  • Empirical investigation of the phases of the artistic process

  • Encouraging of taking initiative in problem solution, assuming an active, creative stance 

  •  Developing an open, critical attitude towards the works of art and the contemporary phenomena they reflect on

  • Developing debating skills

  • Acquiring knowledge about contemporary art genres, styles, techniques and presentation forms

  •  Acquiring the vocabulary of contemporary art appreciation

  •  Assuming the role of contemporary artists in order to understand their working processes


Educational content

Creation: expressing individual, social and environmental issues using the genres, tools, techniques and creative methods of contemporary art. Acquaintance with traditional and media art forms, as well as intermedia forms of creation.

Perception: interpretation and analysis of contemporary artists.


Competence development 

  • Sensitivity to problems

  • Visual expression

  • Creativity and phantasy

  • Problem solving skills, with special regard to solving visual problems

  • Form giving skills, based on knowledge about materials and techniques

  • Skills of visual perception, interpretation, analysis and solid, experience and knowledge based judgment

  • Sophisticated taste, open minded attitude towards modern art

  • Verbal expression, comprehension of (art related) texts



Working form: traditional and individual strategies of problem solution, collaboration in pairs and groups

Activities: analysis of a visual problem, art appreciation, interpretation of media works; visual expression and creation.