What is IB Art?

IMG_6010Being a DP Visual Arts student means…..

  • being playful with materials and ideas
  • looking at things more closely or from different perspectives
  • thinking critically
  • finding beauty or something interesting in everyday things and situations
  • making connections between different ideas
  • making connections between different ‘areas of knowledge’
  • going beyond ordinary ways of thinking and doing thingsIMG_7135
  • being a risk taker
  • arranging things in new and interesting ways
  • exposing yourself to possible failure
  • day dreaming
  • concentrating your effort on long periods of time
  • working hard.

There are three core areas:

Visual Art in Context: This is about the why of art.  Why do different cultures make art?  What does it tell us about our history and us?  Are there rules to making art and can I break them? You will write and you will experiment with media to develop art works in response to your research.

Visual Art Methods: This is making art; in other words all the activities that you would expect to do in the studio using a wide range of media from photography and digital manipulation to painting, sculpture, installation, textiles and more.  This course encourages you to explore different ways to making art; not just what you are comfortable with.

Communicating Visual Arts: This is you as an artist.  You will produce a series of artworks for an exhibition.  You will decide how to best present this exhibition so as to make an impact on the viewers.

This course will change the way you think. (I hope) 


The Visual Arts Journal: This is a record of your studies which will include research, reflection, responses and creative ideas for exploration and development.

Theoretical Practice – The Comparative Study (20%): This is a critical and contextual investigation (which means considering why art is the way it is)  You will analyze and compare art and artifacts by different artists and from different cultures.  You will then develop a practical outcome from your study.  This is all about looking at art and responding to what you see.

Art Making Practice – The Process Portfolio (40%): You will explore different techniques and develop your skills.  You will make art using media both familiar and new.  This is all about experimenting and learning new skills.

Curatorial Practice – The Exhibition (40%): This is the culmination of your course.  You will put on an exhibition of your finished art work.  This is about you as an artist.



For IB Art, students are expected to work through a variety of mediums.  Usually, most students are more skilled at only a few techniques (not everyone is great at everything), so I advise my students to fulfill the art-making forms – and then focus the majority of your works in your strongest media.  Of course, I also love mixed media works – so those can work as well.

Specifically, for SL students, submitted works must be in AT LEAST TWO art-making forms, each from separate columns below.

For HL students, submitted works must be in AT LEAST THREE art-making forms, from a minimum of two columns below.