With voters in the United States expected to show up in record-breaking numbers for the general election, extended waits are anticipated in some districts across the country. Stay inspired with this playlist of Art21 films.

Plan Your Vote

With voters in the United States expected to show up in record-breaking numbers to vote in the general election, extended wait times are anticipated in districts across the country.

In partnership with, we present a playlist of films to help fuel your energy and enthusiasm as you prepare to exercise your voting rights.

Whether enjoyed before heading to your polling site, on location as you wait to vote, or in celebration after casting your ballot, stay inspired with this playlist of artists—each of whom has contributed artwork on

by Art21November 2, 2020 8 videos • 1:34:07 total runtime

Art21 Educators alumnus Alex Mendez challenges students to carefully reconsider the power of words through a playlist of nine Art21 films.

Teaching with the Power of Words

Teaching with examples of contemporary artists who use text as part of their art requires dialogue and discussion about meaning and intent. Students often don’t see words as possible materials or subject matter for art. Showing students the different ways that some artists incorporate text into their work helps them to see the possibilities of doing something similar in their own art. To help students analyze what the artists are doing, I often ask two questions: How do these artists use text in their work? What role does text play in their work? I want students to discover how words can have power in the art that they make and to find the best way to show it.

Barbara Kruger and Jenny Holzer both use text as the major inspiration and primary source material for their work. The work of these artists requires that one read the message in the context that it is displayed. Both of these artists take great care in how words are displayed and focus on the messages that are presented. Showing students works by Holzer and Kruger helps them to see how working with meaning specifically through text can play out in the making of art. Students respond to these artists’ works because they can read and understand the literal meaning of the text and at the same time enjoy the creative ways that these artists relay their messages.

Teaching with the artists in this playlist has challenged some students to think about what art can be, and it has led to careful reconsideration about the power that words have in written form, in spoken form, and in the form of art.

Read how Alex teaches with this playlist in his classroom.

by Alex MendezAugust 26, 2020 9 videos • 1:43:09 total runtime

Art21 senior education advisor Joe Fusaro collects seven Art21 films showing artists who find ways to work in—or work for—the benefit of the great outdoors.

Teaching with the Great Outdoors

With so many places closed to the public these days, one that remains available is the great outdoors. While certain parks or public spaces have closed, others are open for everyone to get a little fresh air or exercise. In the streets outside our homes, we see our neighbors more often than we used to.

Our students have transformed areas in their homes into places that they use for learning and schoolwork each day, and increasingly educators are looking toward getting students more physically engaged, in learning outdoors as well as indoors. Featured here are seven artists who find ways to work in—or work for—the benefit of the great outdoors. Each artist finds ways to weave an individual practice with natural elements and utilizes nature to realize certain ideas.

In one film, Mark Dion takes us through the life cycle of a fallen hemlock tree, and he brings this gigantic “nurse log” to Seattle in order to create an endlessly teachable moment: Neukom Vivarium. Sarah Sze follows her sensibilities to the High Line in Manhattan for a special installation that feeds and houses the birds of New York City. Notice how her signature style—which includes using movement, angular lines, and interconnected forms—plays out in a work that serves as a functional habitat.

Whether one is looking for artists who record the majesty and history of particular places (as Rackstraw Downes and David Goldblatt have done) or seeking artists who engage with public spaces in ways that are unexpected (such as Robin Rhode), this is a collection that presents broad possibilities for learning from contemporary artists working in and with the great outdoors.

Read how Joe teaches with this playlist in his classroom.

by Joe FusaroMay 27, 2020 7 videos • 1:34:00 total runtime

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