MoMA’s ‘How to Make Pottery and Ceramic Sculpture’ was initially published in 1947. Photo source: moma.org
MoMA’s 1947 publication, How To Make Pottery and Ceramic Sculpture, by Julia Duncan and Victor D’Amico, contains 20 hand-built ceramic projects, from pinch and coil pots to slip casting. Here is Project VII – The Human Figure.
The War Veterans’ Art Center was devoted to the rehabilitation of veterans. Its goal was “to discover the best and the most effective ways of bringing about, through the arts, the readjustment of the veteran to civilian life.” The work of the War Veteran Art Center was considered progressive within the field of art therapy in the United States (source: moma.org).
Over 1000 vets took classes in painting, sculpture and ceramics, jewelry, design, illustration and more. The War Veteran’s Art Center couldn’t accommodate all the vets on the waiting list, so MoMA put out a series of art manuals that could be used for self-instruction or as an aid to any teacher of large groups.
The 20 hand-built projects in the ceramics manual are well-written and well-photographed. Stay tuned – I may feature more later this year.
Happy Throwback Thursday! Stop by on Thursdays to see what I’ve found in my vintage art education collection.
Thinking about a Winter Olympic art project? Why not make your own sport trophy for your favorite Olympic event? Our fifth graders created these sport trophies using floral wire, foil, and plaster wrap. Accessories were made from toothpicks and popsicle sticks. We used acrylic paint or metallic spray paint (everyone can ‘get a gold’ if you use gold spray paint!). Everything was attached to a wooden base. You’ll need reference photos as well.
Click here to see all my links to my favorite sculpture supplies. You can also find the floral wire at Michael’s and my favorite pop-up pre-cut foil at Costco and Smart and Final.
I taught this project to adults as well – they were able to create the unpainted trophies in about an hour. At the elementary level, this took us 6-8 sessions at 40 minutes per class. Middle and high school students with NICE LONG CLASS PERIODS (envy envy envy) should be able to do this in a couple of weeks.
Our students look forward to this project for years. They treasure their trophies for years after. A lot of work, but worth it.
Want to introduce your students to texture? Try a texture collage project.
Collage and Construction in Grades 1-4 by Lois Lord, 1970 edition.
I found great instructions in the book Collage and Construction in Grades 1-4 by master art teacher/author Lois Lord. You’ll need large paper for the background format, glue, stapler and scissors, plus ‘materials of contrasting texture’:
Rough textured materials include corrugated cardboard, burlap…used sandpaper, wood shavings, egg-crate dividers, excelsior, and orange, onion and potato sacks.
Contrasting soft -textured material include pieces of fabric such as velvet; scraps of fur; cotton; bits of sponge; and feathers…
Materials with smooth textures include shiny metallic papers bought or salvaged from Christmas wrappings, chewing gum, and other packets.
–Collage and Construction in Grades 1-4, p.10.
Lucky you – you get to actually watch Ms. Lord teach this collage lesson. Please enjoy ‘Collage: Exploring Texture’, filmed back in 1961.
Not only to I love Ms. Lord’s teaching style, I love how she organized her collage supplies by texture and how she distributed the supplies. I wish she had been my teacher! Although this film was produced back in 1961, it is still inspiring.
You may have noticed Ms. Lord’s students used jars of liquid paste applied with a brush. It reminded me of this no-spill paint cup filled with glue at the collage station at San Diego’s New Children’s Museum. The cups come with lids so you can cap them up at night. You will need to soak the brushes in water after use. (note: this may be a good use for the brushes that come with your pan watercolor sets). Want more glue options? Click here and here to see other glue cups in the classroom.
White glue in spill-proof paint cup at San Diego’s New Children’s Museum.
Thanks to Wendy Apfel for sharing this excellent video on Vimeo.
Happy Throwback Thursday! Stop by next Thursday to see what I’ve discovered in my vintage art education collection.
I’m especially interested in ’10 Powerful Strategies for Art Room Organization’, ‘Unlocking the Common Core through Art’, ‘Using Cultures to Create a Thematic Curriculum’, and ‘Teach Your Students to Paint on the iPad’. There’s a lot more on the schedule – check it out!
I thoroughly enjoyed the last Art of Education Conference in summer 2013. I consider it well worth the $99 cost. You will get a Professional Development hours. And unlike traditional conferences, you don’t need to leave the house!
The presentations are very focused – 10-20 minutes long. You can live chat with presenters during their presentation, and there will be a forum as well. I’m the kind of person who loves to ask questions and interact – I’m really happy the online conference has those features. I don’t even have to take notes: enrollment includes access to printables and videos after the conference ends.
I plan on grabbing my laptop, settling in on the couch with cup of hot tea and LEARNING.
Inspired by aquatic artist Wyland, our fourth graders recently completed a great big ocean-themed mural. We recreated the California kelp forest for the Wyland Foundation’s ‘Water is Life’ Mural Challenge.
The completed kelp forest mural. Dimensions 5’x10′
Who is Wyland?
Wyland Whaling Wall in Detroit. Photo source: Wahkeenah via Wikimedia Commons
Wyland is an American artist best known for creating life-size whale murals. He painted 100 of these ‘whaling walls’ around the world, as well as many more paintings of aquatic life. As seen in the whaling wall photo, Wyland often paints a ‘two worlds’ view of the ocean (both above and below the sea). Wyland’s art is very popular and he is commercially successful.
The Wyland Foundation provided us with a free kit, containing instructions, acrylic paints, brushes and a 5’x10′ Fredrix Paint It Yourself Classroom Mural Cotton Canvas Roll. We also used acrylic house paint and rollers. Blue painter’s tape was essential for getting a clean horizon line. We used Sharpies to sign the artwork and to add small details. We used soft-kut blocks and lino cutters to create fish stamps for our school of silvery fish. Tip: I matched our background paint to an undersea photo with the free Color Snap app.
The free Color Snap app is great for matching paint to a photo.
Students used their iPads to research the kelp forest and Wyland’s art. Students posted their favorite images, plus suggestions to an online board on Edmodo.
We painted the mural in stages. Day 1: background, days 2 and 3 were for sea life and details. A maximum of eight kids painted at one time; the rest made sea creature drawings at the adjacent lunch tables while they waited their turn to paint. We used several tricks to create the illusion of space in our mural, including size, placement, value, warm/cool colors and (most especially) overlap. This video shows six tricks artists use to show illusion of space.
We also had small teams of students on special assignment: team seal, team sea otter, official photographers, and fish stamp carvers.
Fourth graders add marine life to the kelp forest mural.
Each student stamped a fish on the mural, creating our own school of Pacific Jack Mackerel.
Although we didn’t win the Wyland Challenge, we created a beautiful mural. Everyone is so proud of it! We learned about the kelp forest, and how to create depth in art. Thanks so much to the Wyland Foundation for all the art materials, and to our parent volunteers for all their help.
Want to learn more about Wyland? Watch 2007 video from the CBS Early Show.
The mission of the Wyland Foundation is to help children and families around the nation rediscover the importance of healthy oceans and waterways through public art programs, classroom science education, and live events. Click here to see the winning 2013 murals and to find out about the 2014 Wyland ‘Water is Life’ Mural and Art challenge.