In January 2014 the younger students began to look at Ancient Egypt. We used maps to find where it is in the world, explored the pyramids and the River Nile to understand the environment, examined cross-section drawings of the pyramids' interiors, and looked at many photographs to see what was found in Tutenkhamen's Tomb.
As this class of kids range in age from 5 - 11, I thought it would interest them to imagine the life of a boy-king, crowned when he was about their age. We drew happy death masks, decorated sarcophagi, painted our own King Tuts, and looked at Egyptian wall paintings from thousands of years ago to inspire us to draw our own garden here at art class in an Egyptian mural-type way. Its been a fun term and beautiful work has been created!
Two adult groups have been working with the ornate art of Gustav Klimt as a guide. Photographs of models helped us 'see' properly by looking at the body as a series of shapes, rather than as beautiful young women. After a few weeks of this demanding approach, we developed drawings with calligraphic pens and Indian ink, filling in with watercolor and decorating with gold and silver paint and pens.
These very beautiful pieces have inspired us to develop the work even further, and we are currently using textures on boards, leaving Klimt behind and referring to our own lives and close relationships to create pieces of true intimacy and tenderness. This is something Klimt as a 19th century bachelor missed in his life, but we as wives and mothers, friends and lovers know and live daily.
GUSTAV KLIMT inspired GODDESSES
Double click on the galleries below to see the full image
from FABULOUS FISH to FAYUM
A group of adult Beginners began 2014 by exploring painting, some for the first time, others with the interest but little experience. Ranging in age from just out of school to well-retired, all share the desire to learn how to paint.
From the basics of mixing paint and using brushes, we quickly moved on to fantastic fish, inspired by photos of tropical marine life, and then onto simple faces with a limited palette.
We are currently finishing the first term being inspired by the ancient Fayum portraits of Egypt. The final pieces will soon be posted...watch this space!
September to November 2014: With the weather cooling down, the garden began to thrive. We took our inspiration from the dramatic tropical flowers that are so abundant, and began our term with improving our observational drawing. From here we embarked on seeing in the negative, and many exciting drawings emerged. Employing charcoal, the work became truly powerful, and when we looked at the charcoal drawing of Georgia O'Keeffe and followed her lead, the tonal explorations that emerged were inspirational. Towards the end of the term we began to paint tonally, and this is the direction we will continue with until the end of the term, and next term too.