27th February 2004 at 00:00
Primary: the current fascination with the visual depiction of monsters in the Lord of the Rings trilogy makes the visual imagery related to this article ideal stimulus material for primary pupils' art activities. Collect pictures of different animals, such as elephants, giraffes and snakes, selecting different parts of them to combine in a collage picture to depict the demon beneath the scales that weighed the souls in Egyptian mythology.

Or as a group project produce a large "hell-mouth" mural in the style of medieval wall painting (examples on www. ecclsoc.orgmouthofhell) with every pupil providing cut-out figures to contribute to the stream of sinners being devoured. A lower level could depict the vile demons tormenting their souls in the style of Hieronymus Bosch or a religious doom painting.

Secondary: using this feature as a basis, introduce the concept that aspects of contemporary society are a living hell. Research and depict such issues as the urban nightmare, addiction, alienation and exploitation, using as references paintings by Otto Dix and George Grosz ("Dedication to Oskar Panizza", 1893) George Tooker ("The Subway", 1959), or photographs by Dorothea Lange ("White Angel Breadline", 1933) and Lewis Hine ("Breaker Boys In Coal Chute", 1911)

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