Halcian Pierre describes herself as a Caribbean Neo-Pop artist, but she is so much more than that. She's a true Trinbagonian cultural being. She has acted, created a cartoon series for a daily newspaper and last but not least of course she paints wonderful and vibrant Caribbean images that leave you thinking of Romero Britto but these are so familiar they are even cooler to look at!
The kids got to see an array of her paintings and then they were challenged to draw and paint one of her pieces. They aren't going to paint it exactly as she did though. They drew along with me and then painted independently, using what they learned of her style as a guide. I wanted to give them the freedom to put a bit of themselves into it but using her style and vibrant colours.
The Great Wave off Kanagawa is one in a series of woodcuts entitled, Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji. Mount Fuji is the highest mountain in Japan. Mt. Fuji can be seen from many angles in this series and in this piece of art, it is placed in the far distance. It almost looks like another wave. It stands quietly and observes the power of the great wave as it crashes into three tiny boats filled with fishermen. This painting is so popular it has influenced not only other artists but it's printed on clothes, turned into tattoos and it's even an emoji! Go ahead, check 😬😂🌊
The Picassos heard all about Japan back when Hokusai (the artist) was alive... Tokyo wasn't called Tokyo then, it was called Edo, and you couldn't buy paint in a store you made it and colours were limited. This artist also used a method of woodblock printing to create his art. They learnt all about that before they got down to drawing and painting our Great Wave interpretation. Talk about a fun lesson full of cultural immersion!
Today my older campers looked at the gloriousness that is Van Gogh's Starry Night and we then re-imagined it in our context. We brought Starry Night to the POS Waterfront using Van Gogh's characteristic colours and his brushstrokes but with our local scenery.
Take a look!
Of course one of Van Gogh's most famous paintings is his Sunflowers and we recreated it with a bit of our very own flair!
The campers created a textured background and learned how to make the vase look roundish... They really focused on making those characteristic Van Gogh styled brush stokes. Then they used clay to make the different sunflowers and leaves.
I think it's important for children to see that there are sooooo many ways to make art and literally anything goes!
From the moment I came across the Trinidadian artist Brianna Mc Carthy I just knew my Picassos had to learn about her. She just emanates creativity and she's so real, and of course she's a mixed media artist that loves to reiterate that you don't have to have the best supplies or the most expensive materials to make art. All in all a great example for my kiddos... plus her stuff is gorg!
Also because it is part of my philosophy to use every chance I get to make art connections to the festivals, events and celebrations of our nation that I chose to end the term with these masks. The added bonus... they get to use a material they've never handled before and they expand their view of what constitutes art just a little bit more... Stretching and stretching their creativity!
Spiritual Baptist Day is celebrated on March 30th, a religion that has its roots in African ancestry. So my Picassos are creating these African masks Brianna Mc Carthy style in recognition of the day.
William H. Johnson was a brilliant twentieth century American artist. Although his work was largely ignored in his lifetime he gained the notoriety he so desperately sought after his death.
He was born in South Carolina in 1901 and by the age of 17 had left his small rural hometown for New York seeking success and fame as an artist. His travels took him all the way to Europe where he met and married his wife, but he eventually returned home after he began to have a longing for painting people and scenes that were familiar from his childhood.
His style changed very much over the years, but he is most well-known for his later works done in a simplistic cubist style using bright and vibrant colours.
This week it's all about the eccentric Salvador Dali at the studio! Dali is known for creating some extremely strange and thought-provoking art in the surrealist style. He was born in Spain in 1904, the second son to his parents. His older brother also named Salvador Dali died before he was born and his parents gave him the same name. Some say that this is why young Dali fought to have his personality recognized and made such a show of his presence.
Dali had many, many quirks... such as;
But Dali put all of his eccentricity into his art so you know that the resulting images pushed the limits of what was considered to be normal! The Picassos looked at one of his pieces in particular, simply named Elephants, which you can see below.
The animal with its long spindly legs brings to mind the concepts of weight and space. We talked about the symbolism in the painting and I drew their attention to the bulkiness of the animal, the thin legs, the barren background and the obelisks on the backs of the elephant and the fact that these are actually floating.
They created their own Dali-inspired animals! Take a look.
Last week the Picassos followed in the footsteps of Post-Impressionist artist Henri Rousseau and created some beautiful jungle scenes. This week watch as they bring these jungle scenes to completion using a variety of different techniques and take in their animals!
Point of Note:
Rousseau painted a variety of 'zoo animals' in his jungle scenes because he never actually left Paris and created his paintings from his research at the zoo and the botanical gardens... so the children are aware for instance that a giraffe's habitat is actually the savanna! LOL
Artist Henri Rousseau painted lively jungle scenes, but he actually never traveled outside his home city of Paris, France and friends there are no tropical jungles there! So how did Rousseau come up with the scenes for his paintings? Well, he visited the Paris Botanical Gardens and embellished what he saw using his very wild imagination!
Today the Doodlebugs started creating our version of what Rousseau might have seen on one of his visits. They sponge painted some flowers and leaves today and we talked about what a greenhouse is and what it is used for as well as how it is different from the jungle!
Next week we will add the greenhouse gates and some more plants to make our Rousseau piece complete!
From contemporary artist Sandra Silberzweig we're moving to 19th Century Post Impressionist artist Henri Rosseau! Rosseau was a self-taught artist who became famous for his jungle scenes. All his artwork was created from his imagination because he never actually left his home of Paris France.
The children started creating their leafy backgrounds today using a combination of techniques. They learnt all about positive and negative space and created their own stencils, they sponge painted for texture and also drew and collaged some leafy foliage to give their jungle scenes some depth. Next week they will finish off their backgrounds and our jungle inhabitants will move in, so stay tuned you don't want to miss that!
Be a fly on the wall in our art room! Take a look at what we do, how we do it and the smiles that I get to see week after week :)