Smithsonian American Art Museum

The Smithsonian American Art Museum website is a colorful, comprehensive collection of over 3,000 of the museum's digitized works that includes an online calendar showcasing different artwork for each day of the month.

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National Gallery of Art

The site spans a wide variety of topics with in-depth studies, online tours, podcasts, and videos of artists, media, and movements from exhibits housed in the National Gallery of Art. Discover highlights of the National Gallery of Art collections with Your Art app for iPhone and iPod Touch.

Cleveland Museum of Art

The Cleveland Museum of Art permanent collection includes more than 36,000 objects. In this database you will find records for all of the objects in the collection.

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Art and Life in Africa Online

African works of art in the context of the lives of African peoples.

  • Mission Nuestra Señora de la Concepción and the Spanish Mission in the New World

    Mission Nuestra Señora de la Concepción de Acuña, San Antonio, Texas, 1755.  Convento and church at dusk.

    In this Picturing America lesson, students explore the historical origins and organization of the Spanish missions in the New World, and discover the varied purposes these communities of faith served.

  • Benjamin Franklin's Many "Hats"

    Hiram Powers (1805–1873), Benjamin Franklin, 1862

    Ben Franklin, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and of the Constitution was also a philanthropist, a community leader, patriot, and Founding Father. This lesson plan exemplifies all our new country fought for in the Revolutionary War: individualism, democracy, community, patriotism, scientific inquiry and invention, and the rights of “We the People.”

  • Martin Puryear's "Ladder for Booker T. Washington"

    Martin Puryear

    Students examine Martin Puryear’s Ladder for Booker T. Washington and consider how the title of Puryear’s sculpture is reflected in the meanings we can draw from it. They learn about Booker T. Washington’s life and legacy, and through Puryear's ladder, students explore the African American experience from Booker T.'s perspective and apply their knowledge to other groups in U.S. History. They also gain understanding on how a ladder can be a metaphor for a person’s and a group’s progress toward goals.

  • Thomas Hart Benton: The Sources of Country Music

    Thomas Hart Benton (1889—1975), The Sources of Country Music, 1975. Acrylic on  canvas, 72 x 120 in. (182.9 x 304.8 cm.).

    By analyzing The Sources of Country Music, students will discover the musical legacy of Thomas Hart Benton’s story of America and learn how the processes of modernity changed American life in the early decades of the twentieth century. By listening to country music, they will understand how advances in audio recording both captured and changed folk music.

  • Midnight Ride of Paul Revere: Fact, Fiction, and Artistic License

    The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, Grant Wood

    This lesson encourages close study of Wood's painting, American Revolution primary sources, and Longfellow's poem to understand the significance of this historical ride in America's struggle for freedom. By reading primary sources, students learn how Paul Revere and his Midnight Ride became an American story of patriotism.

  • Lascaux: La Vie en Caverne!

    Deer painting, Lascaux  cave, France.

    In this French language lesson, elementary-school students learn about the ways that early humans communicated through art by exploring cave paintings of France and creating their own wall artwork.