Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Summer Fun: Wire Sculptures

For some of us, there is a budding artist in our homes who covers our windows, walls, and refrigerators with memories to last a lifetime.  For others, you may have to beg, bribe and otherwise force your angel to make anything that resembles an artistic creation.  And, for many of us, we are the hold up.  We are insecure about the results of our artistic endeavors and don't want any proof of our lack thereof.

Art is not meant to be perfect.  It is not something without flaws but rather whose flaws make it unique. Art is something to share; something to be appreciated, no matter how simple the result.  It is an expression; a way of showing on the outside what we feel on the inside.  Most of us express ourselves through words.  Some of us do it more skillfully than others but we all do it so that our ideas may be heard.  The same is true through art.  Some of us may be better at expressing ourselves with visual arts but that should not stop all of us from recording our inspirations.  We are not all perfect and imperfections are what make us, and our art, interesting.

This week, we visited the local museum and considered some artists who expressed themselves on canvas like Monet and others who expressed themselves through sculpture like Calder.  We looked at pottery, canvas, bronze and wire artworks, considering what things the artists used to convey their message.

Today, help your angel find his or her inner artist... and you find yours, too!

Pipe cleaners of varying sizes
small rocks, not sharp

  1. Introduce your angel to images of wire art.  Search Google for wire sculptures, mobiles, jewelry, kinetic art etc. to find examples.  Try works by Elizabeth Berrien, Alexander Calder, or Arthur Ganson.
  2. Give your angels a pipe cleaner and try coiling or bending pipe cleaners to form different shapes.  You can find suggestions on pages 3, 10, 11, and 14 of the paper titled "Alexander Calder-Inspired Wire Sculpture".
  3. Give your angel the remaining materials and ask them to create their own wire sculpture.
  4. Join your angel and do your best (no matter how beautiful) to create a wire expression of your own.

When your angel finishes, help them find a place to prominently display their work.  Show their work off to friends and family who visit.  Take a picture of their art and save it to show them later.  The pride that you show in their work is what is important to them.  Help them learn to love this method of expression, not for the result that it creates but for the benefit of the process itself.

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