11.27.2012

Modern Art 4 Kids: Frank Stella Sculptures

This sculpture was created by my son, a fourth grader.
If you ever want to calm down a group of kids and engage their hands and minds at the same time, you should definitely do this: create sculptures. So, what exactly are sculptures? Here is the definition:

sculp·ture/ˈskəlpCHər/

Noun:
The art of making two- or three-dimensional representative or abstract forms, esp. by carving stone or wood or by casting metal or plaster.

Verb:
Make or represent (a form) by carving, casting, or other shaping techniques.

Synonyms:
noun.  statue - carving - statuary - sculpt
verb.  carve - sculpt - sculp - chisel - engrave - model

In simple terms, it's something you build and it's anything that you can view from different angles. Children of any young age can create sculptures. It engages all of their senses and you will be amazed at what they come up with. Our inspiration:

Image: Onsite

We decided to study the American artist and printer Frank Stella, whose work spans five decades. He's one of the first artists to use shaped canvases. We studied Stella a few years ago with amazing success. I knew I'd want to do this project again. His shaped canvas paintings slash sculptures were our inspiration. This really cool kid's art project can be created with very simple materials, such as cardboard, scissors, masking tape, a glue gun, paintbrushes and tempera paint.

My cute art students creating shapes from cardboard. Your younger students may need help with the scissors.
Once they have their shapes cut, they began to create a design by overlapping their shapes. This is what makes it "3-D"! Then they secured it with masking tape, until it was their turn with the glue gun to hold it all together.
Once the glue dried, we painted our sculptures with tempera paint. Acrylic craft paint would work great too.
Miss Maya painting her masterpiece. You go, girl! Look at how amazing her creativity is.

I love the intensity of my artists!

Maya's finished sculpture.

Some students created people shapes.

My fellow art teacher, Mr. Cortes, sharing each student's artwork with the group.


The holiday break is coming soon. So is a houseful of bored kids who want to drive you mad crazy. Now you have a cool, inexpensive project for them to do over their vacation--they can create Christmas-themed sculptures, ornaments, robots, cars, fashion design, play food, pretty much anything they want to create. If you have younger kids, cardboard might be too tough for them to cut. Cereal and pasta boxes are the perfect alternative.

Enjoy.
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