1st grade students will focus on the French artist, Henri Matisse. Matisse is known for his vivid, bright, and bold color combined with harsh outlines that often flatten his images. This style may seem naive at times, but it does in fact, go hand in hand with his love of cut paper and collaging. The students will create a Diptych (double) Self-Portrait in a Matisse style. One side of their diptych will be created in an organic style using oil pastel and paint, while the background will be collaged using famous cut paper designs inspired by the artist himself. For the other side of the diptych, the students will use a geometric style of collage to construct their self-portrait, while creating an organic Matisse painting in the background. I am so excited about this project, and I am sure the kids will really love it too. Check out inspiration below.
2nd graders will be looking at the lovely artist, Amy Genser. Genser designs these breathtaking paintings and mixed media compositions based on earthscapes and nature. She paints a textured, rich, and bold canvas, and proceeds to add a plethora of rolled paper tubes all over the canvas in a well thought out manner. The students will look at nature imagery, even go outdoors to take photos and discuss the colors, textures, and patterns they see. To create their paper tubes, they will each paint 2-3 large white papers using a watercolor wash. Once dry, the will draw straight lines to make strips that are any where from 1/4" to 1". These strips of watercolored paper will then be rolled up into various sized tubes, and finally attached to their tempera painted tagboard. Last night I stayed up working on a teacher example, and had so much fun in the process that I slept way later then I should have. I have now decided that this project is so cool and successful, that with some modifications, I may try it with other grades too. Check out some of Amy Genser's paintings below to get an idea of what to expect. Can't wait!