Jackson Pollock was an American artist who painted in the abstract expressionist style. He is best known for works created by dripping and splashing paint on a large canvas that would lie flat on the floor. Additionally, he would often use dance-like movements when splashing colour on the canvas - a method that came to be known as action painting. Here are a few ways that you can explore Pablo Picasso with your learners in early childhood settings.
This artwork is ideally made outdoors since a lot of splashing and splattering are involved. Also, ensure children are wearing clothes that are allowed to get a bit dirty. Layout large paper and secure in place with rocks or tape if painting indoors. Help kids place tempera or any other washable paint in cups and then add some water to achieve consistency of pancake batter. This is where educators might want to go over a few expectations with the young artists – splashing paint only on the white sheet and not on each other or on the grass/another surface. When you think children are ready, tell them to take a darker colour, like deep blue, and use paintbrushes or plastic spoons to drip the paint on the sheet with a variety of hand movements. Eventually, they can move on to other brighter or contrasting colours to drip and splatter on the sheet. At this point, you can tell them that Pollock was known for moving around his canvas like he was doing a dance with his painting. Invite them to apply paint from all sides and to keep layering the colours until they feel satisfied with their composition.
Just like the above idea, this works best outdoors and when children are dressed for a bit of messy artwork. Materials needed include paints, paintbrush, rubber bands, paper and a strong frame - like baking tin with raised edges, a picture frame with glass removed or a sturdy box. Help prepare the ‘canvas’ by stretching rubber bands across the frame, tin or cardboard box. Next place a piece of paper under the frame or at the bottom of the tin/box. Show kids how to use paintbrushes to apply a layer of paint to each rubber band. Then tell them to pull back each rubber band and let them ping! As the rubber bands snap back into place the paint will splatter onto the paper. Have them paint the rubber bands in different contrasting colours and encourage them to ping from different angles for more varied patterns.
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