Friday, April 5, 2013

25 Days of Art: Louise Bourgeois and Ink Blots

This is the first artist tie-in day, and the project's connection to the chosen artist is tenuous at best. Louise Bourgeois is the French artist best known for her Maman sculptures- giant metal spiders that loom over plazas and sculptures gardens worldwide. Louise Bourgeois herself had a pretty fascinating life, not one that I would necessarily share with small children, but I can see disaffected high school art students getting really into her particular brand of melodrama.  Anyway, I love her sculptures; there's one in a sculpture garden less than a mile from our library (and 2 miles from my home) that I visit pretty often and a lot of our kids have seen. 

This is not the one near me. This is somewhere in Canada.

Her organic forms, especially the leg joints, are sculpture at its best to me. It really does look like a spider ran into a magnifying ray-gun. 

We obviously can't cast bronze in the library but the fantastic book Let's Make Some Great Art by Marion Dechurs (which has been the inspiration for a lot of the 25 Days of Art projects) gave me the idea to use ink (or watercolors) and straws to mimic the same shapes found in her sculptures.

Today was also a pre-school story time day. And the preschoolers went a bonkers over the paint and made a huge mess before any of the older kids showed up. Live and learn, I guess, I'll be reviewing our calender and maybe making some schedule changes on Tuesdays and Thursdays to less messy projects.

-paint or India ink (we used a mixture of watercolors and tempera)
-dropper bottles (optional)

Cut the straws in half so they'll go farther. Mix up the watercolors and put them, if possible, in bottles with some sort of flow control top so the paint doesn't all come rushing out at once. I used 3 ounce gravity bottles from the Target travel section.

Drop ink on paper and then use the straw to blow into the pool of ink so that it spreads across the paper. Repeat as desired. Once the paint has dried, you can go back in with markers to transform the ink blots into monsters or spiders or whatever your heart desires.

Because there's so much more to ink blots than this straw blowing method, I also left out copies of Inkblot by Margaret Peot which contains lots of great projects to do with dripping ink.

Miss Lucy's Example:

Kid Art:

-Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
-Inkblot by Margaret Peot
-Let's Make Some Great Art by Marion Deuchars
Today was a messy day.

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