First I shared information about Franz Kline. He created large scale black and white paintings. These paintings resembled Chinese Calligraphy.
My students looked at Chinese Calligraphy resource pictures. They used black oil pastels to draw lines on a 12′ x 12″ canvas that were influenced by the Chinese characters.
Next, they added white acrylic paint using sweeping brushstrokes with a 1″ flat brush. They were encouraged to occasionally crash into the oil pastel to create some gray areas.
In the following class, they placed black acrylic paint over the black lines allowing some of the texture of the oil pastel to remain on the surface.
Jim Dine was next. We looked at his heart paintings. I gave them another canvas – a 4″ x 4″ one. They created heart stencils, traced them onto this smaller canvas then painted the canvas – either white heart with black background or black heart on white background.
Students then used colorful oil pastels on the heart and its background.
I had them choose a wood block, glue it to the back of the smaller canvas then adhere it to the center of the larger one.
I call it a Tash Mash because it is a mash-up of Kline and Dine but I use the heart motif in many of my own paintings as well, and I utilize the wood riser technique when mounting my encaustic paintings onto chalkboard painted masonite boards. And I invented the lesson.
I’m thinking about doing a series of encaustics in this style. Thank you, Franz Kline and Jim Dine for your contributions to Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art, respectively, and for having names that rhyme.
There is still time to visit the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York. The Keith Haring exhibit will be on display until October 11, 2021. Meanwhile, on the walls of Chittenango Middle School, my students’ artwork is currently on display. It took a lot of heavy-duty stickies to get them to stay up – the tile was not particularly cooperative.
Keith Haring – Radiant Vision is a must-see. It is a complete immersion into the history and legacy of artist Keith Haring (1958-1990). The Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York did a phenomenal job presenting this traveling exhibition of artwork from the Cassenelli Preston Collection organized by PAN Art Connections, Inc.
Haring was an advocate for healthcare, happiness and children. His work lives on courtesy of The Keith Haring Foundation. If you have never heard of him, you will have seen his imagery in magazines, on billboards and in coloring books.
This is a life history of an artist’s trajectory, tragically shortened by an Aids related death. His career spanned only ten years but it left an indelible mark. The exhibition resonates with emotion. It is incredibly beautiful and powerful.
There is a participation section, as well as an activity book for children to enjoy. Merchandise in the gift shop includes a Haring diary, which I will read this summer.
The exhibition continues through September 6, 2021.
The Public Has a Right to Art: Keith Haring’s Art & Activism Tuesday, July 27, 7:00–8:00pm EST A live Zoom lecture about Keith Haring’s art and activism, led by Dr. Leesa Rittelmann. More info…
Keith Haring 3-Day ‘Funshop’ for Kids (ages 6-8) Mon-Wed, July 19-21, 9:30–11:30am Young artists will explore the colorful and expressive art of Keith Haring. More info…
Keith Haring 3-Day Illustration Workshop for Kids (ages 9-12) Mon-Wed, July 19-21, 1:30–4:00pm A series of projects inspired by the bold, expressive artwork of Keith Haring and the artists and illustrators who inspired him. More info…
Be prepared for an all consuming journey of the mind, if you plan to visit Syracuse University’s Point of Contact Gallery (350 W. Fayette Street, Syracuse, New York 13202) in the next two months. Puerto Rican artist Rafael Trelles has reinterpreted visions, dreams and literature to create a compelling dialogue between artists while exposing his queries regarding the human condition in his art exhibition titled The Imagined Word.
Twenty-two painted drawings are presented here. They are figurative – faces painted with etching inks, an oil-based ink that dries relatively quickly (as opposed to using oil paint, which would bleed on this particular paper, as he explained to me at tonight’s reception).
Some faces came first until a literary resource matched the artist’s hand then others selected first and the process reversed. Gestural lines and acrylic paint in sweeping brushstroke join these brilliantly rendered portraits to create compositions of depth and allegory, allowing the viewer to attach meaning in terms of their own identity to the stories with respect to personal fears and the beauty of their individual subconscious realms.
There is magic here. These recent pieces reflect two years of work. Next up for the Trelles, large-scale paintings on canvas and an exhibition in London!
The Imagined Word continues through March 13, 2020.
Point of Contact Gallery |350 W. Fayette St. Syracuse, NY 13202 | Open Monday – Friday: 12PM – 5PM or by appointment. Call (315) 443-2169 for more information.
This year there are fifteen 8th graders in my Studio in Art accelerated high school course at Chittenango Middle School. They finished the Lions Club Peace Poster project just in time for the end of the first marking period and for the judging last Wednesday. This is an international competition where the big winner gets $5,000. At the local level, the Chittenango Lions awarded monetary prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.
This year’s theme is Journey of Peace.
Posters will be on display in the guidance office where we have recently created a little gallery space. They will be moved to the Sullivan Library’s Community Room for the month of December 2019.
Today our winning poster competes for the regional title. If it wins, it continues its journey at the state level then internationally.
The Lions Club is providing us with a luncheon on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 in our classroom. I am so incredibly blessed to have these wonderful people in my life. They are so supportive of my program and each year for the past thirteen years they have turned three of my students into professional artists. That’s a lot of pros! Win-win! <3
I drank a lot of iced coffee yesterday, well after 5:00 pm then I devoured free and salty buttered popcorn in the VIP lounge at the Mary J. Blige concert last night, which caused a totally weird all-night awake fest (thank God for old episodes of Million Dollar Listing on Bravo on-demand). I fell asleep somewhere around 6 am and woke up around noon, thus missing my weekly Sunday trek to the flea market.
Yes, Tuesday’s return to work after eight weeks of summer bliss will be a rude awakening for me. I will need to start getting up at 5:30 am and if I can do that, it will be by some sort of divine miracle.
This afternoon, in order to satisfy my craving for old stuff/junk/treasure, I decided to wander into Syracuse Antiques Exchange (1629 North Salina Street, Syracuse, New York 13208).
The building itself is an antique. Here are some pictures from yesteryear courtesy of their Instagram account/Facebook page.
The place is chock full of antiques. Four floors of vendor vignettes – clothing, jewelry, furniture, sports memorabilia, knick-knacks, collectibles even Tiffany stained-glass windows! Very cool! Purchases are made at the desk – on the first floor by the entrance.
Prices are as marked but there is a little bit of wiggle-room for haggling, like maybe 10% off. If the vendor is available via a text message, you are golden.
They are open every day 10:30 am – 5:30 pm, although they are planning to be closed tomorrow due to the Labor Day holiday. Call (315) 471-1841 for more information. <3
I can barely walk right now – I hike literally everyday – at least seven miles per, but today the stairs at Clark’s Reservation kicked my butt. They are depicted here in this scale model, located inside the Nature Center at the park.
They were built in 1878 by James McFarlane who had purchased the property to turn it into a summer resort. Patrons could take the stairs to catch a boat ride on the meromictic lake. Descending them now is like living in a dream. They are of the rustic old-timey variety – and there are a lot of them.
And when you get to the bottom you see this sign, reminiscent of a Scooby Doo cartoon, that reads Danger Quicksand. Is quicksand really real? Really??!!
Clark’s history is a fascinating one. The land had first been divided to be allotted to Revolutionary War veterans in the 1700s. For some unknown reason, nobody collected it and so, it was reassessed, sold and sold again until Mary Clark Thompson purchased the lot of it and donated it to the state of New York in tribute to her father. It is a New York State park, one that is free to the public and open dawn to dusk every day.
It is located at 6105 E. Seneca Turnpike, Jamesville, New York 13078. ((315) 492-1908)
There is a Nature Center there. Cameron Aloi is the resident naturalist. He is a student at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. He will be there to answer your questions (as he was today) on the weekends from 11 am – 4 pm. Other volunteers, part of the network known as the Council of Park Friends (CPF), take turns manning the museum during the week.
They are responsible for the nature center’s maintenance and also offer many programs to educate the public in regards to the flora and fauna of the park. CPF welcomes new members with a tax deductible gift as low as $20 per year.
Upcoming events include a photography hike on August 17, 2019 at 1 pm and the annual volunteer meeting on September 12, 2019. See their web-site for the deets.
My favorite part of my visit was seeing the great collection of taxidermy wildlife. They would be ideal for my classroom. OMG, the drawings we could do! Pheasants and bobcats are on my dream classroom wishlist (true story, that). <3
I didn’t know Marlene Roeder could draw when I met her twenty-five years ago while we were both working at Franklin Magnet School, an arts magnet elementary in the Syracuse City school district in Syracuse, New York.
She was the grant writer and big into theatrical productions. I was a daily substitute teacher. She has since retired from that job, as well as from her position as an education curator at the Everson Museum of Art – and taken up the art of mandala making.
Her artwork is available for sale at Eye Studio (712 W. Manlius Street, East Syracuse, New York). Last night was the opening reception for Circle of Life, a month-long exhibition of these intricate ink and colored pencil originals and prints.
Marlene shared her passion for creating the drawings. She begins with a large compass then decides how many points she will create. Pencil then pen and ink followed by color. Some of the pieces have been published in a coloring book. She does “coloring parties” too, in which she offers color theory tips and the therapeutic escape that coloring provides.
There are several series within this concept. Groupings of pieces inspired by family, landscapes, seascapes, still-lifes, time and social injustice. They are all infused with a spiritual belief system and a desire to share visual thinking strategies as a means to understand and further enjoy art, and the art-making process.
Marlene is an advocate for “the persecuted and oppressed”. She gives 20% of her art sales to the A21 Campaign, an international organization that fights to end human trafficking.
For more information, contact the artist at firstname.lastname@example.org. <3
I have always been drawn to the exquisite beauty of all that is Ancient Egypt. I took an Egyptology course at University College while teaching at Bryant & Stratton back in the ’80s to answer a student who questioned why and how Egyptian fashion was selected as the first chapter in the costume history textbook.
The answer lies in art, because all of our history to do with ancient cultures comes not from the written word, but from pictures – in this case hieroglyphics, tomb murals and, of course jewelry, as well as the remnants of clothing made of linen fiber.
I learned that Napoleon’s French army invaded Egypt in 1798. They rediscovered the antiquities and were the first archeologists to investigate the area. It wasn’t the painstaking attention to delicate detail that it is today or even remotely a respectful handling of human remains.
Many mummies were burned as fuel for steam engines, which is just so tragic. Later on, in the following century, Egypt became an exotic vacation spot for wealthy Americans who enjoyed purchasing the baubles, scarab beetle decor, and mummies!
They held mummy unveiling dinner parties back in the States, stuff like that.
Howard Carter uncovered King Tutankhamun’s tomb in 1922. This significant find catapulted Egyptian archeology in terms of the level of importance, the regard for history and the sheer magic in attaining this priceless treasure.
Somewhere in the middle, during the Victorian age, Cazenovia Public Library benefactor Robert James Hubbard and his son accumulated a collection of Ancient Egyptian artifacts including an intricately wrapped-in-linen mummy for the purpose of creating a museum.
And so, yes, there is a mummy in this library.
Yesterday, Janine and I visited Cazenovia, New York; first stop, Cazenovia Artisans, second, Common Grounds and next, to the library to see this exhibit. We ended up at Empire Farm Brewery for lunch. Janine had never been to any of these spots nor had she an idea this breathtaking collection even existed. So, my thought is that not many of you know about it. You’re welcome!
When I taught elementary art at Bridgeport Elementary School in our district, I decided to add a few lessons on Ancient Egypt culture to the third grade curriculum, because I had this knowledge I wanted to share. I created a cat mummy sculpture lesson. Naturally, no pets were harmed. Students’ sculptures were made of an armature of plastic bottles and styrofoam balls. They were void of remains, unlike the actual cat mummy at this museum.
At Chittenango, it is the sixth graders who study the ancient civilizations in Social Studies. They do take a field trip to Cazenovia Library, as the village is adjacent to our school district via Route 13. I highly recommend a visit. It is free and really quite extraordinary.
The library is located at 100 Albany Street, Cazenovia, New York 13035. It is open Monday – Friday 9:00 am – 9:00 pm, Saturday 10:00 – 5:00 pm. They are closed on Sundays. Call (315) 655-9322 for more information.
The museum space is also home to a gallery for rotating local artist/art organization exhibitions, as well as a wonderful exhibit of birds and plumage in fashion. They also have many interesting activities for children including puzzle clubs and such. Yesterday they had a hot chocolate and cookie station available. Set in a Victorian mansion, this is truly a quaint and lovely experience that really packs a secret chamber punch. So special! <3
I decided to infuse the 8th grade Medusa drawing project with real people. I was driving to work a few weeks ago and the idea just came to me, lol, but would the teachers at Chittenango Middle School go for it?
On the half day, I sent out an email then I ran around taking pictures of those who were receptive to being immortalized as Medusa. The principals were even on board, which was so, totally, awesome!
Students selected from the faces and added the snake hair and Greek pattern border. We watched excerpts from 1981 and 2012 Clash of the Titans while using Sharpies and colored pencils. Here are the results. They used 16″ x 20″ white heavyweight tagboard and Prismacolor colored pencils.
I have two classes working on a new batch on brown Kraft paper. It is such a fun project. So many possibilities with regard to color schemes and composition. So incredibly satisfying!
This artwork is currently on display in the hallway outside of my classroom at Chittenango Middle School in Chittenango, New York. It will be up for a while, at least until the end of the semester at the end of January. I will display some of them at the school fair in May too.