Notan Japanese Aesthetic Principle meaning Light and Dark
Find beauty not only in the thing itself but in the pattern of the shadows, the light and dark which that thing provides.Junichiro Tanizaki
The artistic principle of Notan involves a balance between lights and darks in an artwork. Example by 8th grade student
We put thirty spokes together and call it a wheel; But it is on the space where there is nothing that the utility of the wheel depends. We turn clay to make a vessel, But it is on the space where there is nothing that the utility of the vessel depends. We pierce doors and windows to make a house; And it is on these spaces where there is nothing that The utility of the house depends. Therefore, just as we take advantage of what is, we should Recognize the utility of what is not. This poem, attributed to Lao Tse, was written about 2,000 years ago. It addresses the basis of all design, Notan.
ARTS VOCABULARY Elements of Design: SHAPE, FORM, SPACE VALUE - LIGHT AND DARK Principles of Art: BALANCE Block print by SSterrenberg
In calligraphy, the white space is just as important as the kanji character.
A strong Notan design helps artwork succeed. The concept of Notan applies to many areas of art, including painting, drawing, graphic design, sculpture, architecture and photography. It also applies to other arts disciplines like dance and theater.
Creative Expression Task: Create design with balance between shapes and space, between light and darkMaterials: Light and dark paper squares Scissors GlueTechnique: Cut and paste 8th grade student work
Criteria for Assessment • Craftsmanship • Cutting: Clean, sharp edges • Pasting: Neatness, accuracy • Design COMPOSITION • Details, complexity • Placement • Originality
Scoring Rubricfor Finished Artwork Craftsmanship Cutting Pasting Design Composition Balance Creativity 7th grade student work