An Afternoon of Abstract Art #surviving lockdown

Home schooling continues and we’ve just had a pretty successful art ‘lesson’ – not everything has been successful so I’m celebrating this little success. The Littlest has been great at giving things a go, but she hasn’t always been hugely impressed with her current ‘teacher’ – being a parent and teacher definitely has its challenges. And we only have one child to home school (the other two at school should be managing their home schooling themselves, I merely provide copious amounts of food for them and the one in hospital I attempt to support as much as possible by phone/FaceTime) plus I’m in the hugely privileged position of having the time. I know how hard it must be for so many parents juggling all this stuff.

Back to art. The real-life proper school sends out a weekly plan for all subjects and for art, the children have been tasked with looking at abstract art.

Abstract art seems to divide people with many looking at an abstract painting and saying that ‘anyone could do that’ or they don’t like it because they can’t see what it is. But in a way that’s the beauty of abstract art – there is no right or wrong – it doesn’t have to be ABOUT anything. I love what Picasso said about understanding art:

When children are looking at something they have a tendency to just take it for what it is rather than look for some hidden meaning. So, looking at abstract art with the Littlest has made me open my eyes and see things differently too. We used the Tate website that showed how abstract art began and developed over the twentieth century, in pictures And the BBC has a great short video where someone ‘goes into’ one of Kandinsky’s paintings

We watched a video from a Mumbai based fine artist called Suraj–WiyBc&usg=AOvVaw0_BsMvCfGyzzeVryQ8WNLQ and the Littlest then used the same technique to make her own abstract art.

Materials: acrylic paints, canvas/thick card, cling film, something cylindrical to roll across the canvas, small paintbrush

1. Choose the coloured acrylic paint you want to use and then blob 6 or so different colours on the canvas.
Canvas with acrylic blobs
2. Carefully put a piece of cling film over the canvas.
3. Carefully roll over the clingfilm to spread the paint out.
4. Carefully lift the clingfilm off.
5. Using white acrylic paint, blob on top of the ‘smudged’ paint.
6. Cover canvas with clingfilm.
7. Carefully roll over the clingfilm to spread out the white blobs.
8. Carefully remove clingfilm.
9. Using different coloured acrylic paints, fill in the ‘gaps’ on the canvas, using a paintbrush.
10. One happy little girl (one proud mummy)!

Author: Mother of the Tribe

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