Archive for November 8th, 2010

My appearance in their colorful Kindergarten classroom was the culmination of two months of art projects.  They had started kindergarten in September and had already worked in a number of mediums and styles:  by the time they sat for me, they had worked in drawing, painting, mosaic, pottery  and sculpture; they knew about Van Gogh and Picasso; they had been to art exhibits, including the installations at the Evanston Art Center, where the readers (those who at the age of five or six could already read) had  read the wall placks for everybody—not an easy task in the case of installations.   So, here we were on October 25th—Picasso’s birthday!—and I was drawing caricatures of bright six-year-olds in Wilmette.  They had done self-portraits in the style of Picasso.  Today they learned about this art form called Caricature.

I started by showing them how to sharpen a China marker:  you pull this string and then you unwind a long thin strip of paper.  They were fascinated.  I drew all of their squirmy alert selves in an hour-and-a-half and then I drew the two teachers who orchestrated all these complicated activities.

Two days later, I attended the opening of their exhibit, complete with the nibbles and drinks expected at art openings.  The “art opening” was one of the concepts they were learning about, along with “fingerfood.”   My caricatures of them were all on a wall, neatly sealed in plastic sleeves. The room was full of their earlier achievements.  Parents were happy to see the work.  As was I and I was amazed at the  ingenuity of these teachers.


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