For this project, we focused on Do Ho Suh. Do Ho is a South Korean artist who recreates the places that he has lived out of a semi-transparent mesh/silk. He includes every little detail, right down to the numbers/buttons on the microwave and the switches in the breaker box. His homes that he builds are 1:1 scale so everything is actual size. He plays with this idea of being able to take the memory his home with him wherever he goes. So he creates it out of a light fabric and then could literally pack it up into a briefcase and take it with him.
Coincidentally, Do Ho had a piece go up in Madison at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art right when we were beginning to learn about him. I even attended an artist talk that he gave. It was AMAZING to hear him talk about his work in person.
This was a really long project for the 3rd graders but they hung tough and rocked it.
The first day, they were given a worksheet and they had to draw a house in the space provided. They were expected to use rulers so that their lines were nice and straight. The worksheet guaranteed that all their houses would be the same size and would fit onto their pieces of burlap. If they finished drawing their house, then they could cut it out.
The 2nd day was spent getting everyone’s house drawings finished and cutout. When they were that far, they chose a piece of burlap that I had pre-cut and carefully taped off all four edges so that it wouldn’t unravel as they worked. Lastly, they gently traced their house onto their burlap using chalk and could then fill in the houses details from there.
The next 3 or 4 days were spent stitching. At first, I taught students how to tie knots at the end of their yarn so that it wouldn’t slide through the burlap, but I was about ready to tear my hair out after doing that for a couple classes. To fix this, we ended up just taping the loose ends of the yarn on the back of the burlap, that way students didn’t have to futz with tying knots. I was also aided in my instruction by the fabulous Cassie Stephens because we all know how much I struggle with using fibers!
Overall, this was a super awesome project. These turned out great and the kids loved learning about Do Ho Suh! I only wish that these photos did my students' work justice!
Harmony and Consolidated Elementary Art Teacher in Milton, WI. UW-Eau Claire graduate. WAEA President. Apple Teacher.