Sei sulla pagina 1di 7

Banksy: artist

or vandal?
(Unità di apprendimento di Luca Pulejo)

CONTESTO: IV N dell’Istituto di Istruzione Superiore Statale "Caravaggio" situato nel quartiere romano
di Tor Marancia, in via Tommaso Odescalchi n. 88. La classe è composta di 18 alunni dell'età compresa
fra i 17 e i 18 anni. La maggior parte degli alunni proviene dal III N, cui si sono aggiunti due ripetenti.
CEFR: Le competenze linguistico-comunicative degli alunni si collocano per la maggior parte al livello
B1/B2 del Quadro Comune europeo di riferimento. Vi sono anche 5 studenti le cui competenze
raggiungono il livello B2/C1 per corsi pomeridiani finalizzati al conseguimento della certificazione del
FCE (First Certificate in English) o CAE (Certificate in Advanced English).
PREREQUISITI: Gli studenti sono in grado di scorrere testi di una certa lunghezza alla ricerca di
informazioni specifiche e di reperire, in punti diversi di un testo, le informazioni necessarie per portar al
termine un compito specifico. (p. 88 del Quadro).
Gli studenti sono in grado di comprendere in gran parte programmi TV o filmati quali interviste, brevi
conferenze, notiziari (p. 91 del Quadro).
Gli studenti sono in grado di intervenire in una discussione con discreta scioltezza su argomenti familiari,
di routine o che li interessano o che si riferiscano alla loro professione (p. 105 del Quadro).
Gli studenti sono in grado di trasmettere informazioni e idee su argomenti sia astratti sia concreti,
verificare le informazioni ricevute, porre domande su un problema o di spiegarlo con ragionevole
precisione (p. 102 del Quadro).
Gli studenti sono familiari con il funzionamento e l'utilizzo delle nuove tecnologie quali: LIM;
Voicethread (https://voicethread.com/) per realizzare presentazioni multimediali che possono essere
integrate da un commento audio e caricarle su Google Classroom (https://classroom.google.com/h) o sul
Padlet della classe (https://it.padlet.com/).
TEMA: Banksy, artist or vandal?
DISCIPLINE COINVOLTE: Lingua e letteratura inglese; Storia dell'arte.

1
TIMETABLE FIT: L'unità didattica sarà svolta nel primo trimestre all'interno del progetto "Big City Life”
(http://www.bigcitylife.it/) organizzato dall’ associazione culturale 999Contemporary
(http://www.999contemporary.com/) e finanziato dall’ Assessorato alla Cultura, Creatività, Promozione
artistica e Turismo di Roma Capitale con lo scopo di riqualificare culturalmente e artisticamente il
quartiere popolare di Tor Marancia.
TEMPO: L'unità didattica sarà svolta in 5 incontri di un’ora circa, cui si aggiungono le ore necessarie allo
svolgimento dei compiti assegnati. La serie di incontri si concluderà con la visita alla mostra War,
Capitalism and Liberty (https://www.warcapitalismandliberty.org/) organizzata dall’associazione
Fondazione Terzo Pilastro – Italia e Mediterraneo.
APPROCCIO: integrato; umanistico - affettivo; comunicativo.
METODI: Cooperative Learning; Peer Tutoring.
TECNICHE: Le tecniche utilizzate nel corso dell'unità didattica sono: cloze test; vero/falso; gap fill;
brainstorming; composition.
RATIONALE: L'obiettivo preposto dall'unità didattica è quello di mostrare la bellezza, la varietà e la
complessità dell'arte urbana. S’intende motivare gli studenti alla discussione mediante la scelta di un
argomento di attualità e dunque di loro gradimento.
OBIETTIVI SPECIFICI DI APPRENDIMENTO: Lo studente dovrà acquisire competenze linguistico-
comunicative corrispondenti al livello B1/B2 del Quadro Comune Europeo di Riferimento. In particolare,
dovrà:
- comprendere in modo globale, selettivo e dettagliato testi orali/scritti attinenti alla forma artistica
dell'arte urbana.
- riferire fatti, descrivere situazioni ed esprimere opinioni sulla Street art in forma sia orale sia scritta.
-partecipare a conversazioni e interagire nella discussione in maniera adeguata sia agli interlocutori sia al
contesto.
OBIETTIVI INTERDISCIPLINARI: Lo studente dovrà analizzar e approfondire aspetti concernenti la
Street art per sviluppare un pluralismo culturale e linguistico.
MATERIALI: I contenuti curriculari saranno veicolati da documenti autentici in lingua inglese di varia
natura. Tra questi: https://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-england-bristol-45772481/banksy-artwork-self-
destructs-after-1m-auction-sale, https://www.digitaltrends.com/cool-tech/banksy-artwork-self-destructs-
after-it-auctions-for-13-million/, https://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-42847060/calls-to-clean-off-banksy-
mural-in-hull.

2
LEZIONE 1
Il docente prepara la classe all'incontro con la Street art illustrandone il significato culturale del setting
(dove; quando?; come?; perché?), le caratteristiche, i generi, le implicazioni e le tematiche. Il docente si
aiuta proiettando delle immagini selezionate da Google Immagini mediante l'utilizzo della LIM.
Successivamente il docente distribuisce la fotocopia “The History of Graffiti”
(http://learnenglishteens.britishcouncil.org/skills/reading/upper-intermediate-b2-reading/history-graffiti).
I ragazzi completano la comprensione del testo tramite la tecnica del Cloze test facilitato e del Matching.
(50 minuti)

The History of Graffiti


Exercise 1: Read the text and fill the gaps with the following verbs: appear in (2), take off, cover in, cornern
with, write on, go on, produce.

1) The first drawings on walls appeared in caves thousands of years ago. Later the Ancient Romans and Greeks
wrote their names and protest poems on buildings. Modern graffiti seems to have …………. Philadelphia in the early
1960s, and by the late sixties it had reached New York. The new art form really …………. in the 1970s, when
people began writing their names, or ‘tags’, on buildings all over the city. In the mid seventies it was sometimes
hard to see out of a subway car window, because the trains were completely ………….. spray paintings known as
‘masterpieces’.

2) In the early days, the ‘taggers’ were part of street gangs who were …………… marking their territory. They
worked in groups called ‘crews’, and called what they did ‘writing’ – the term ‘graffiti’ was first used by The New
York Times and the novelist Norman Mailer. Art galleries in New York began buying graffiti in the early seventies.
But at the same time that it began to be regarded as an art form, John Lindsay, the then mayor of New York,
declared the first war on graffiti. By the 1980s it became much harder to ……. subway trains without being caught,
and instead many of the more established graffiti artists began using roofs of buildings or canvases.

3) The debate over whether graffiti is art or vandalism is still ………. Peter Vallone, a New York city councillor,
thinks that graffiti done with permission can be art, but if it is on someone else’s property it becomes a crime. ‘I
have a message for the graffiti vandals out there,’ he said recently. ‘Your freedom of expression ends where my
property begins.’ On the other hand, Felix, a member of the Berlin-based group Reclaim Your City, says that artists
are reclaiming cities for the public from advertisers, and that graffiti represents freedom and makes cities more
vibrant.

4) For decades graffiti has been a springboard to international fame for a few. Jean-Michel Basquiat began spraying
on the street in the 1970s before becoming a respected artist in the ’80s. The Frenchman Blek le Rat and the British
artist Banksy have achieved international fame by …… complex works with stencils, often making political or
humorous points. Works by Banksy have been sold for over £100,000. Graffiti is now sometimes big business.

Exercise 2: Match each paragraph with its title: a) Art or vandalism?; b) Famous graffiti artists; c) Not just a
modern phenomenon; d) Increasing exposure and attention; e) The future of graffiti.

Come compito, gli studenti sono invitati a scrivere delle frasi in cui riutilizzano i phrasal verbs incontrati
nel testo “The History of Graffiti”. Preparano inoltre una breve composition in cui spiegano le loro
opinioni sulla street art.

3
LEZIONE 2
La lezione comincia il warming-up dei contenuti della lezione precedente tramite la tecnica dello
brainstorming. (5-10 minuti). Al termine di questo, il docente introduce brevemente la figura di Banksy e
distribuisce alla classe la fotocopia del testo Who is the street artist Banksy? tratto dal sito della Headway
Learning (https://www.tes.com/teaching-resource/who-is-banksy-reading-comprehension-11737310).
Completata la lettura ad alta voce, gli studenti lavorano a coppie per rispondere alle domande della
Reading Comprehension. Le risposte andranno poi scritte sul quaderno. (15 - 20 minuti)

Who is the Street Artist Banksy?

Exercise 1: Complete the text by filling the gaps with the following verbs: spray-paint, expand,
produce, pop up, deliver, paint over, poke fun, take on, ispire, prosecute, raise money, remain.

a) Who is Banksy?
Banksy is a famous - but anonymous - British graffiti artist. He keeps his identity secret!
He produces pieces of work which pop up in public places, such as on the walls of buildings.
He began ……… trains and walls in his home city of Bristol in the early 1990s. Bristol is well known for
its colourful street art and graffiti.
But in the 2000s, he ……. his work beyond Bristol and was soon leaving his artistic mark all over the
world.
He quickly became well known as an artist who would ………. at big companies and send political
messages through his work.

c) What is his style?

Banksy was heavily ………. in his early days by a French graffiti artist called Blek le Rat. Not only did
this artist …….. Banksy politically, but Banksy was also inspired by his use of stencils.
Banksy ……… this visual style for himself and, to this day, uses stencils to do a lot of his work.
This allows him to create his paintings with great detail in a short amount of time - and has also helped
him to …… anonymous.

d) Why is he controversial?

His artwork can be rebellious and is known for ……… a political message.
There are lots of people who love what he does, paying many thousands of pounds for it and considering it
to be incredible art.
But there are others who don't support what he does and consider it to be vandalism.
Some of his graffiti has been painted over soon after it appeared.
There is a debate about why Banksy's work can be protected as 'art' when other graffiti artists are ……….
and sometimes even put in prison for doing the same thing.
Some of his work is also controversial because of what he does with it.
At an exhibition of his work in London in 2005, he released 200 live rats in the gallery. Rats are a
common theme in his work.

e) How expensive is his work?

Banksy was enough of an artistic celebrity by the early 2000s that his work would sell for a lot of money.
In an auction in 2008, a piece of work called Keep It Spotless was sold for $1.8m - that's just over £1
million.
4
In the same year, a mobile home that had a piece of Banksy artwork on it was given a £500,000 price tag.
This was all because of the artwork that it had on the side.
When Banksy leaves his artwork on buildings, there can sometimes be arguments about who owns the
pieces and what should be done with them, as they are very valuable.
Sometimes people want to sell them to ……. for a cause, while others think the works should be left to be
enjoyed by others.

Exercise 1. Reading Comprehension.

1. What did Banksy begin spray painting?


2. Do we know Banksy's real name?
3. Which city is well known for its colourful street art and Graffiti?
4. Which artist inspired Banksy?
5. Which newspaper said that they knew who Banksy was?
6. Which technique does he use?
7. Which artist inspired Banksy?
8. What did Banksy set free during an exhibition of his work?
9. How much was a mobile home worth after a piece of Banksy artwork was added?

Come compito, gli studenti sono invitati a vedere su Youtube il video Banksy: artist or vandal di
Podcastsinenglish.com (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ob9Q1E2X3eA&t=2s). I ragazzi dovranno
scegliere almeno due lavori dell’artista e preparare su di essi una breve composition, presentarla sulla
piattaforma Voicethread e caricarla sul Padlet della classe.

5
LEZIONE 3
Il docente chiede agli studenti di presentare i loro elaborati, avvalendosi della LIM. Successivamente,
l’insegnante distribuisce la fotocopia dell’articolo “Banksy painting 'self-destructs' moments after being
sold for $1.4 million at auction” (https://edition.cnn.com/style/article/banksy-painting-self-destructs-
auction-trnd/index.html) e la classe procede nella comprensione del testo.

Banksy painting 'self-destructs' moments after being sold for $1.4 million at auction
For an artist who's known for his stunts, this could be Banksy's most perfect art world prank.
After the gavel fell Friday at Sotheby's auction house in London, Banksy's Girl with Balloon was reduced
to shreds -- another apparent act in the disruptive career of the anonymous British graffiti artist.
The iconic image of a girl reaching out for a red, heart-shaped balloon, sold for $1.4 million. Moments
later, a shredder hidden inside the "artist's frame" started its work and the art "self-destructed," according
to a news release from Sotheby's.
Banksy summed up the stunt with this quote on his Instagram account -- "Going, going, gone ..." along
with a picture of stunned onlookers as the shredded art emerges from the bottom of the frame.
"It appears we just got Banksy-ed," Alex Branczik, Sotheby's senior director of contemporary art, said in
the news release.
On Saturday, a video posted on Banksy's Instagram account showed the secret shredder being built into
the frame "a few years ago ... in case it was ever put up for auction." The artist also posted the Picasso
quote - "The urge to destroy is also a creative urge."
There's no word on how the shredder started operating at the key moment after the auction, though it
could have been activated by a remote mechanism.
The auction price of $1.4 million for the spray paint and acrylic on canvas Girl with Balloon tied the
artist's previous record set in 2008.

Exercise 1. Check your understanding: are these statements true or false?


1) Banksy’s work was sold for $1.4 milions. T/F
2) The work is called “Girl in the Sky” T/F
3) The work was destroyed by the fire. T/F
4) Banksy intented his work to be sold. T/F
5) Banksy put a shredder inside into the frame. T/F
6) The shredder was activated by accident. T/F

Infine, usando la tecnica del role-playing, la classe immagina di trovarsi in quella mobile home (casa
d’arte) e di reagire all’evento.

6
LEZIONE 4
Il docente, divisa la classe in 4 gruppi, invita gli studenti a discutere le caratteristiche ideologiche di
Bansky tramite degli articoli originali tratte da testate inglesi. Le tematiche sono: la lotta al capitalismo, la
tutela della libertà di espressione e l’atteggiamento anti-belligerante: (30-40 minuti)
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/banksy-street-art-port-talbot-
https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2017/may/07/banksy-brexit-mural-dover-eu-flag
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/12119274/New-interactive-Les-Miserables-Banksy-artwork-
outside-French-embassy-in-London-criticises-use-of-teargas-in-Calais-refugee-camp.html

LEZIONE 5
Gli studenti, una volta acquisiti i contenuti necessari per comprendere la complessità, i generi e le forme
dell’arte urbana, si recano a Palazzo Cipolla in via del Corso 239 per visitare la mostra War, Capitalism
and Liberty ( https://www.warcapitalismandliberty.org/) dedicata alla figura di Banksy. Al termine della
visita vi sarà un dibattito, organizzato dalla associazione culturale Fondazione Terzo Pilastro – Italia e
Mediterraneo (https://www.fondazioneterzopilastrointernazionale.it/), con alcuni degli artisti che hanno
partecipato alla riqualificazione del quartiere popolare di Tor Marancia fra i quali Gaia, Diamond, Best
ever e Jerico.