Challenge 1
Self Portrait, 1889 by Vincent Van Gogh
Era: post-Impressionist×1024.jpg
Catalogue Title: Self-Portrait (1966)
1966. Silkscreen ink on synthetic polymer paint on nine canvases, Each canvas 22 1/2 x 22 1/2″ (57.2 x 57.2 cm), overall 67 5/8 x 67 5/8″ (171.7 x 171.7 cm)
Era: Cubism
ArtistFrida Kahlo
Dimensions: 1.74 m x 1.73 m
Medium: Oil Paint
PeriodNaïve art
Created: 1939

Appreciation and Appraisal

My first thoughts of Frida’s ‘the two fridas’ was that there was a stark contrast between the two. One looks to be ‘prim and proper’ whilst the other seems to be more causal and her true self. It shows one with a heart and one without, perhaps two lives. The use of the scissors and the blood on the white dress is interesting, perhaps it refers to a bleeding heart, cutting ties with an old life and yearning for it.

Technical appraisal

The sky in the background looks to be quite moody and has used dark colouring mixed with white clouds to create that ominous feeling. Perhaps these two Frida’s are experiencing some kind of disorder. The two Frida’s themselves have the same expression, however noticeably different in their appearance. The use of the hearts and them being connected by an artery I am assuming, creates the knowledge in the viewer that these two share the same heart and are the same, however they are two different people in each stage of their life. One looks to be more traditional, perhaps from another era where as the one on the right is more casual, whole hearted becoming herself in this new age. It is known that this artwork is representative of Frida’s separation from her husband and she is now entering her new life, leaving the old behind. So the use of the techniques and suggestions through painting metaphor represents this.

Self Portrait

This self portrait was inspired by Andy Warhols self portrait above. It was a relatively easy process of doing a few Google searches on how to create pop art. I found a program that I could do this on and experimented with a few different colour combinations but stuck with this one as it used both warm and cool colours.

I am not an artist by any means and drawing anything other than random shapes on a piece of paper is daunting to me. I did this by looking at a self portrait I took on my phone and drew without looking from start to finish. It turned out much better than I thought and only took a few minutes. Getting a feel for where my lines started and ended helped me create a drawing that was not so distorted.

Self portrait using HB Pencil then transitioning into colour

This took me back to my high school art days where I used to have to have one on one sessions with my art teacher because she said to pass Art I needed some practice. This is one of the parts I was not good at, drawing portraits. I have not advanced my skills by any means, but it was nice to draw this in a way that used lots of little strokes of the pencil on the paper. I took some inspiration from Van Gogh’s self portrait at the top of the page. There were lots of little lines to much up that painting.

I built on the HB pencil drawing and added colour pencil. I used only a few colours as this is what Van Gough used. All cool colours were used as I wanted to create a sense of calm when the view looked at this, as this is how I view my current state.

Classroom Implementation for Year 3&4

Content descriptors:

Explore ideas and artworks from different cultures and times, including artwork by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, to use as inspiration for their own representations (ACAVAM110 – Scootle )

Use materials, techniques and processes to explore visual conventions when making artworks (ACAVAM111 – Scootle )

Present artworks and describe how they have used visual conventions to represent their ideas (ACAVAM112 – Scootle )

Identify intended purposes and meanings of artworks using visual arts terminology to compare artworks, starting with visual artworks in Australia including visual artworks of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples (ACAVAR113 – Scootle )

To incorporate Art into the classroom and ensure that students are exploring art works not only from different cultures and eras, I would develop an art challenge such as this one. The class would be given two different self portraits, one from an Indigenous artist, another from Andy Warhol as this would be a great artists to look into as there is lots of colour to explore and could be completed on an iPad for example. I would show the class a video of Indigenous painters and they techniques that are used to when making artwork. There would be explicit teaching on Andy Warhol and how cubism as a convention is represented and the process they would need to use to represent this. Students would develop their own self portrait using these methods as these are two contrasting ways o representing ideas and making artworks.


Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority. (2022). Visual Arts year 3 and 4 content descriptors.  

Frida Kahlo. (n.d.) The Two Fridas, 1939 by Frida Kahlo.

National Gallery of Art. (2022). Self-Portraits by Van Gogh.

Revolver Gallery. (2022). Self-Portrait (1966).

By aevans12081993


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