Update on our Art Making classes!!

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The Mason Gross Extension Division art classes are underway and we are getting some truly amazing artwork from our students. Click below to find out more about each project!

A big thank you to our students and wonderful Art Instructor, Ms. Grace Jackson! We hope all of our students are enjoying the art classes as much as we are! Keep up the great work!

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This piece is from one of the first activities we did where students were introduced to different paint application strategies, alternatives to the brush.  The lesson began with slide show of several iconic abstract painters, including Rauschenberg, Richter, Pollock, Frankenthaler. Our discussion included questions about gesture and queries regarding the impetus to paint this way rather than from life.  We used spray, bubble wrap, sponges, wood, squeegees, paper.  This image is a collaborative experiment where the instructor set up a basic demonstration of different techniques and had the students try out each method before starting their own.

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These are preliminary thumbnail sketches for a Surrealist inspired “dreamscape.” The class looked and discussed a number of surrealist images and students were prompted to imagine their own scene drawing inspiration from surrealist sensibilities, ie thinking about dreams and invented environments.  We are trying to encourage them to expand their process to include a bit of brainstorming, planning, taking the time to generate options and make decisions before getting started.

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These are our current works in process.  This lesson started with a look at some historic landscape paintings from the Hudson River School and relating them to stills from contemporary science fiction movies.  This type of work can be a little dry for anybody, especially kids, but it’s of great interest to me to shed a more radical light on it and see it in the context of other visual culture it influences.  After looking and talking about several pieces (composition, scale, human to nature ratio, contrast, use of complimentary colors), students made preparatory sketches of the landscapes they wish to create, and have been working on these paintings for 2 sessions, wrapping up next week. While they are painting, the instructor alternates between meeting one on one and doing color mixing demos in the middle of the room as different concerns arise. (ie how to mix more neutral colors like brown or gray, observing these colors in our environment–can you point to something that’s not a color, working wet into wet, using a fan brush, waiting for something to dry and making layers, how to use a palette knife, using square brushes to make straight lines etc)

– The Mason Gross Extension Division

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