Teaching Ideas

Encouraging Dialogue

For Students K-12

  • This is a painting by the German artist Sigmar Polke. The story "How Wang-Fo was Saved" inspired Polke to create his painting called Clouds. This story can be found in the book Oriental Tales by Marguerite Yourcenar (Macmillan, 1986) or click here for a clip of the story read aloud.
  • Do you recognize any elements of the story in the painting?
  • Which part of the story has Polke chosen to show in his painting?
  • Have you ever read a story or seen a movie that inspired you to create something? What was it and what did you create?
  • How would you describe this painting? What is the mood of the painting?
  • This painting is large—it is about 10 feet by 13 feet. How do you think the size or scale of this painting affects the way that you view it? How would it feel different if it were 10 inches by 13 inches?