Visual Arts

Visual Arts covers a broad field of creative practice that involves the hand, the eye, the intellect and the imagination.


In conceptualising and creating two-dimensional and three-dimensional artworks, objects and environments, Visual Arts reflects the aesthetic, conceptual and expressive concerns of individuals or groups. Learners acquire the capacity to make practical and aesthetic decisions in the development of a coherent body of work.

The subject Visual Arts is about self-expression and offers learners a way to engage meaningfully with, and respond to, their world. It provides opportunities to stimulate and develop learners intellect, engaging their creative imagination through visual and tactile experiences and the innovative use of materials and technology in realising their ideas. It also encourages learners to develop an individual visual language and literacy, which is informed and shaped by the study of visual culture, past and present.

Aims of Visual Arts

Grade 10 – 12 Visual Arts learners aim to:

  • explore, develop and realise creative ideas in response to both externally set and self-generated projects, drawing on own experience and own knowledge of visual culture in the past and present;
  • explore and manipulate materials, techniques, processes and technology in the making of imaginative and innovative artworks of personal expression;
  • explore materials, processes and techniques in an efficient, economical, safe and responsible way;
  • manage own working process;
  • observe, assess and analyse art forms, processes and products;
  • communicate effectively using visual, oral and written language skills;
  • critically appraise own work and that of others;
  • develop entrepreneurial skills and professional practice within art to explore a variety of career options;
  • be exposed to the diversity of visual arts traditions in international and Southern African contexts and use it as a resource; appreciate the critical role visual arts plays in the enrichment of the visual environment of the school and community;
  • understand the links between visual arts and the creative industries, such as design and advertising; and
  • understand the social and historical role of visual arts in transforming societies;

The course offered at Glenwood involves Art on an academic and a practical level.


The boy who intends to study Visual Arts at the Form IV, V and VI level must:

  • show a keen and genuine interest in the arts
  • be committed and dedicated
  • have a keen interest in all structures – that of the man made world and natural world (as this is where he will draw his inspiration from)
  • have a willingness to learn, to experiment with art materials and apply newly acquired skills to his own creations
  • have to some extent a natural flair and talent in art (to cope with practical assignments)
  • have to some degree academic potential (to cope with the History of Art aspect)

It must be stressed that this subject should not be considered as an easy option. It is a challenging and demanding subject, but most rewarding to those who use it to their full potential.

What is possibly as important an aspect of the Art course is the overall impact it has on pupils. Even if they choose not to study Art after school, they leave school more culturally aware, enriched academically and sensitive to the world around them.