Inside the Box

Inside the Box.pdf

Dublin Core


Inside the Box


Meaning and Objects


Objects are often “clues” within an artwork that, when investigated, provide deeper insight into the artist’s intentions. Within this unit, learners will analyze how objects are used symbolically and create their own small box installation. In an effort to explain their aesthetic and symbolic choices, the learners will wrap up this project by drafting a short narrative, telling the story behind their box.


Lane Laney


“Still Life,” Pieter Claesz (1962.18)
“Armoire,” Louis Majorelle (1997.20)
“Snuff Bottle with lid” (collection)


Handheld Art


Columbia Museum of Art

Unit Plan Item Type Metadata


10 classes


Visual Arts Standards:
VAH2-1.3 Communicate ideas through the effective use of a variety of materials, techniques, and processes in works of visual art.
VAH2-3.2 Analyze and describe the relationships among subject matter, symbols, and themes in communicating intended meaning in his or her artworks and the works of others.
VAH2-3.3 Select and effectively use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning through his or her artworks.
VAH2-5.2 Make complex, descriptive, interpretative, and evaluative judgments about his or her own artworks and those of others.

Integrated CCSS: ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.


The learners will...
• Investigate and explain how artists include and manipulate objects in their work to tell a story or send a message
• Create a three-dimensional “visual riddle” by strategically manipulating and installing items into a box
• Present and discuss their work and the work of their peers
• Write a short narrative, telling the story of their box


boxes, found objects, hot glue guns, super glue. Optional items: wood, shop tools, foam core/matboard, plexiglas, x-acto blades, fabrics, wallpaper books, old furniture that can be demoed, old containers like baby food jars

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