Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Twelve Year Old Artists
Parents of Seattle public school kids will know that it is the season for little league baseball, shopping trips for summer clothing and the dreaded school auctions. Our schools are sadly underfunded and many schools supplement their budgets with funds raised from families through events like auctions. This year I contributed to my son's school auction by organizing the sixth grade art project and got each child to paint a flower from our Seattle gardens. Mothers brought in helebore, anemonies, tulips and whatever else they had in their gardens which the kids painted in acrylic on gold leaf. I instructed everyone to focus on the shape of the plant and to work slowly "like a scientist making an observation". I was so impressed with the intensity of focus the kids showed. The results are obvious. Wow. You can click on a picture to see it in detail and try to identify each flower. They are so full of character and not "generic flowers" at all.
After the individual paintings were finished I took them home and cut out each flower and glued them onto a couple of panels. (A crazy amount of work, I know)
Here is Henry's painting.
The end result is reminiscent of Dutch and Flemish still life paintings from seventeenth century, like the one below by Jan van Huysum. Well maybe not reminiscent, but at least a similar idea.
I am also reminded of the innocent exuberance of a nineteenth century Baltimore album quilt like the one below.
Posted by Safi Crafts at 10:23 AM