Here is a project I do based on Gerhard Richter. Students create two paint-scraped paintings using the primary colors. When they scrape the paint, the colors mix and create secondaries. Afterwards, I cut up one of their paintings and they weave their two artworks together. Here's a write-up on a previous Richter project I did.
Gerhard Richter is a contemporary German artist who is well-known for his photorealistic paintings that he then blurs using a soft brush or squeegee. He is also famous for creating abstract paintings and then using a squeegee to scrape away paint.
For this project, we painted two sheets of paper the primary colors. When painting, we had to work thickly and quickly with our paint so that it wouldn't dry. After students had covered their papers with the primary colors, they used a strip of tagboard to scrape away the paint on their paper. As they scraped, the primary colors would mix together and create the secondary colors. The kids thought this was the COOLEST THING EVERRRRR and I thought it was pretty cool too for re-learning our color mixing! As they scraped, they could also change the pressure to their scraping and it would create different effects on their paper.
Each student made two paintings. One of the paintings they got to keep, the other painting I cut up into small strips that we then used in a weaving project. For the weaving project, each student got a sheet of paper that had slits cut into it. Students then practiced weaving their painted paper strips into it. Some students caught onto this right away while others struggled. I was really proud of the ones who got it and then helped teach it to their friends who were struggling with it. Throughout the weaving, we talked about patterns and how it is similar to ABAB patterns that they may have learned about in music.
On the final day, we used construction paper crayons to add a different pattern to each row of the weaving. I think next time I will have them just do one pattern on the entire weaving rather than a new pattern for each row.
So this was a project that I got from a super rad teacher named Don Masse. He runs the Shine Brite Zamorano blog which is one of my faves! I had the privilege of meeting him during an art Twitter chat that I recently hosted.
So we kicked off this project by watching videos of ice caves. We also talked about Wisconsin's ice caves on the Apostle Islands.
We began the art-making by talking about secondary colors. Secondary colors are made by mixing two primary colors together. So the secondary colors are purple, green, and orange. Although we only used purple for this project, I thought it would be a good idea to at least talk about the other two. Students painted their paper red and then painted blue on top of it, mixing the colors right on their paper to make purple. Depending on how much blue or red they used, could effect whether they ended up with a blue-purple or a red-purple. The first day, we also tore a blue paper into triangular shapes to create icicles. We added a blue shadow with chalk to the same side on each icicle before gluing them down. This was a SUPER messy day because the students were gluing their icicles onto wet paint.
The second day, we continued to to tear paper to add icicles. This time we tore grey paper and then white. Some of the icicles we began to crumple up. This created texture in our art. Texture is how something feels or how something looks like it feels. After adding their chalk shadows and gluing them down, we got a great sense of space in our paintings. Now I'm not talking about that space up in the sky, ya'll. Space in art is the illusion of depth. We talked about this on the second day. Because the blue icicles were in the back, and then the grey, and then the white, it created the illusion of depth because the darker colors were furthest away. We also talked about how overlapping creates a sense of depth.
This lesson was packed full of art content and they rocked it once again!
Harmony and Consolidated Elementary Art Teacher in Milton, WI. UW-Eau Claire graduate. WAEA President. Apple Teacher.