Jean-Michel Basquiat Art Game
Are you looking for a fun way to teach about modern Black artists? Going to be absent and need last minute art sub plans? Fill up your sub tub with engaging art lessons like this Jean-Michel Basquiat art game that excites students. It’s how I get students excited to learn art history! Step-by-step picture directions and the included PowerPoint presentation with close-up, detailed photos will guide your students from start to finish.
Teach your students about modern art as well as Basquiat’s rise to fame in New York City under the name SAMO. It’s an amazing story about grit, determination, and perseverance. In addition, use it to discuss art as social commentary towards the issues people of color have faced in the art industry.
Are you trying to foster more independence in your art room? This doodle drawing game makes for the best and most productive early finisher activity for your students. You can set up a choice-based art center where students select an activity amongst different ones. Print out the game board and directions back to back, put them in a labeled folders, and let them pick what they’d like to create. This is similar to a directed drawing activity in which students are guided through the art process.
If you’re a teacher looking for a differentiated art lesson that boosts independent thinking, problem-solving, and skill-acquisition, this will do the trick.
You will create a Jean-Michel Basquiat portrait by rolling the die and collecting the different parts needed to put it together.
- First, scribble some crayon or oil pastel loosely on a large sheet of paper.
- Next, push, blend, and scrub acrylic or craft paints over the pastel. Let it dry.
- Then, roll the die to pick a head shape from the first column. Using a thin brush and black paint, draw it at the top of the paper. Afterwards, roll to select eyes from the second column, a nose from the third column, a mouth from the fourth column, and a body shape from the fifth column. Don’t worry if what you paint doesn’t match perfectly. It’s a Basquiat!
- Once it’s dry, use crayons or oil pastels to foosely fill in some areas and add scribbles to the portrait. Leave some areas untouched.
- Then, using a white pastel or crayon, trace over the outline of the figure loosely.
- Lastly, add some free-association elements like words and random doodles using markers, crayons, or pastels.
I’ve included three ways students can generate their design. The first is the game board where students roll the die to select their parts. The second is a “you pick” board. Both of these are printables. And lastly, for teachers needing engaging lessons during distance learning, I’ve added digital spinner wheels!
First, print out the Jean-Michel Basquiat game and picture directions back-to-back. Then give your students dice and watch them have fun creating their own art project independently. If you have access to a smartboard or projector, use the accompanying PowerPoint presentation. It will guide the students during each part of the art project.
Once completed, have students use the self-assessment rubrics to evaluate their artwork based on craftsmanship, creativity, following directions, work habits, project goals, and clean up. And then have them complete the “Big Ideas” sheet so they can connect the creation process to their learning.
If you are substituting or need a fast finisher activity, use the included coloring page.
6th – 8th grade
Main Learning Objective
Students will be able to paint a Jean-Michel Basquiat portrait using mixed media techniques and an array of art materials.
- Brown Craft Paper (or some other heavy painting surface)
- Coloring Materials (oil pastels, crayons, colored pencils, and/or markers)
- Paint (acrylic, craft, or non-washable liquid tempera)
You Will Receive
- 17-Page, Non-Editable PDF (Jean-Michel Basquiat Art Game)
- 9-Page, Non-Editable PowerPoint Presentation
- Roll a Dice Game
- Choice-Based Drawing Version of the Game
- Jean-Miche Basquiat Biography Handout
- Step-by-Step Picture Tutorial and Directions
- Visual Arts Self-Assessment Rubrics
- Artist “Big Ideas” Reflection Sheets
- 8, “I CAN” Statements Aligned to the Studio Habits of Mind
- 4 Exit Tickets
- Practice Drawing Page
- Coloring Page
- Paperless Google Drive digital resource for students (also for use in Google Classroom, Schoology, Canvas, Seesaw, Microsoft OneDrive, Teams, and anywhere else you can share a link to a file…link on the bottom of page 2)
- Digital Spinner Wheels in the download as well as on Google Slides and YouTube (links on the bottom of page 3)
These art projects are so fantastic! They work for multiple age and ability levels and they always turn out so wonderful. I’m using them as the core of our art portfolio building this year. Thank you so much! – Dawns B.
Students loved the use of mixed media and experiencing multiple techniques working together in one composition. What was challenging for them?
The students referred to it as making “messy” art – the random crayon scribbles, and random scrubbing of paint, they did not expect their messy and random strokes would compose a visually pleasing artwork . At the end, they loved how this random composition of mixed media created texture, depth, and variety. Use of white colored pencil on top of the black paint was another favorite of the students – how the simple fine lined white pencil strokes changed the work, elevating the visual interest through contrast. – Christine K.