|Bendigo Art Gallery, 42 View Street, Bendigo VIC 3550|
Get creative at home with these fun activities designed for kids and families.
Abdul-Rahman Abdullah inspired paper clay birds
The Gift, 2019 by Abdul-Rahman Abdullah presents a masterfully carved and painted wooden pigeon, sitting alert on a box. In some cultures the pigeon can be seen as a symbol of love and peace, representing a caring, reaching out idea as a sculpture. Do you have a favourite bird or birds? Perhaps you could find out what your bird symbolises as a totem animal or as a symbol.
The Gift is one of a small series. The others are, a crow balancing on a traffic cone, (The Incident, 2019) and a budgie on a brick, (The Guest, 2019). For each art work the type of bird, the small scene, and the title of the works give clues about the themes represented in Abdul-Rahman Abdullah’s work.
In light of this sculpture, this activity is about modelling and painting your chosen bird from paper clay. Using your favourite bird as a reference makes it all the better. Images of your bird can help you with the shape and painting. Then we’ll go on a treasure hunt to find just the right plinth or, you can make your own while thinking up an original name for your work. Enjoy!
Nell inspired clay critters
The character of Love Forever, by Nell, sits centered on a wooden stool, animated with rounded holes for eyes and wide open mouth. What do you think, is this ceramic creature surprised, scared, shocked, happy to see you or singing a song? The figure’s shape is adorned with cockatoo feathers and those of a pet. If you look further at Nell’s work you will see this familiar face in a variety of expressions used on different shapes, materials and scenarios. With Nell's Love Forever in mind we invite you to make, decorate and display your own mini hand-built critter.
This September School Holidays online activity explores modelling techniques for little hands to make expressive creatures. The feeling and the shape it takes is your choice. A big thank you to Sid, Peggy and Herb who share how it can be done using paper clay, some paint and textas.
You will need some paper clay (or airdrying clay), this can be made at home, (usually a chunkier texture) or purchase a smoother version from a local art supply store. To give your creature personality and life you can use decorative media such as water-based paints, and textas. Craft wire and other pieces, like beads, buttons, leaves and feathers, are also easy and fun to decorate with. Enjoy!
Kate Rohde inspired diorama
Image: Kate Rohde, Four seasons; Flourish Spring 2008. Polyester resin and multimedia. Courtesy of the artist and Karen Woodbury Gallery. Photographer Ian Hill
Kate Rohde’s Flourish Spring 2008 is inspired by the fantasy of Baroque and Rococo periods of art where forms are brought together in a very decorative way. Let’s celebrate Spring and join in making a Kate Rohde inspired diorama. Extend your imagination while using a mix of things you may find around your home with those you have crafted yourself.
The diorama is a form you can use to frame a scene with. The size and shape it takes depends on what you have. Some suggestions for ‘the stage’ may be a plastic or glass jar, a cardboard box or a cake stand, like we have used.
Keep your mind open to possibilities, what you may use in your artwork depends on your imagination. Follow along in our small step by step with your own bits and pieces. We have used our origami rabbits from last weeks Art at Home and hand made flowers using recycled or up cycled materials like plastic vegie bags, patty pans, paper clips, and post it notes.
Tim Clarkson inspired origami
Image: Tim Clarkson, Companion 2012, earthenware, slab built, glaze, artist made decals. Gift of Rod Fyffe 2013. Bendigo Art Gallery Collection.
Tim Clarkson’s earthenware sculpture, Companion 2012 provides inspiration for an origami project using paper you may find in your recycling.
You may mistake Melbourne based artist, Tim Clarkson’s sculpture as a beautiful newspaper folded dog, inspired by the Japanese origami technique. Look closer though and you will see it has been crafted in clay using the slab technique. ‘Companion’ is part of the Bendigo Art Gallery collection and provides us with inspiration to make your own ‘origami pet’.
For ages 10 and up, (you may need an adult to help out with some of the steps.)
Instructions in video.
- 13 x 13 cm paper (not too heavy in weight and not like card, we have used a recycled sugar packet)
- Contrast coloured paper or a texta for eyes
- Hole punch
- Glue stick
Look up other animals by Tim Clarkson. Make some more animals using the origami technique. Photograph in different scenes to inspire a story or two.
Discover our Outdoor Sculptures
Did you know we have a giant skulll at the entrance to the Gallery? Discover this sculpture and others using this sculpture trail especially for primary aged children. Along with the trail you will need a pencil and a clipboard or book to lean on.
Image: Alex Seton. Sometimes the dead are more alive than the living 2017. Wombeyan marble. Courtesy of the artist and Sullivan + Strumpf, Sydney
Set up and explore your own Still Life
Can you name all the animals in this painting?
Why do you think the artist has included teacups and spoons with the animals?
Set up your own Still Life (group of objects) using things from your kitchen and bedroom. Include at least one bottle and one soft toy, such as a bear.
Choose objects of different sizes and textures like Kate has.
- Wrong Hand Draw - Look at your Still Life closely. Now using a pen and your wrong hand draw an outline of everything you can see. Remember to look more at the Still Life than your paper. The drawing should look funny.
- Bottle Top - Draw your bottle with something coming out of the top. It could be fireworks or it could be a ghost. You could even make up a new label for the bottle. For this activity use coloured pencils or markers.
- Soft Toys - Using a drawing pencil (2B or 4B) look closely at your soft toy. Now draw not just the outline of the toy but the surface (texture) of the toy. To do this you have to experiment with different lines and tones (light and dark). Can you now draw a shiny surface?
- Pet Life - Draw the whole of the Still Life with whatever materials you like. Now draw your pet or a favourite animal hiding, climbing or jumping somewhere in it.
Image: Kate Bergin. The Alpaca’s Tea Party 2011, oil on canvas. Image courtesy of the artist and Mossgreen Galleries
Driveway Drawing Activities
Get outside and stretch your imagination.
Attach a piece of chalk to the end of 2 long sticks using masking tape. Use your driveway/footpath as the running track, now try different types of races, skipping, hopping - notice how your lines change.
Lie down on the driveway and get a member of your family to draw around you with chalk. What bones/organs are in your body? What do they look like and where they are located? Draw these in using different coloured chalk.
Make a strange shadow with your body and get a family member to draw around it. Now add some horns, a tail and other details to make yourself into a one-of-a kind monster.
Draw up some different size frames along your driveway, now fill the frames with drawings based on the things you can see outside. Can you see a distant mountain, a bird, a wheelbarrow? Perhaps you could make a family gallery where everyone takes a turn making their own drawing.
We would love to see your Shadow Monsters and Driveway Galleries.
You can share these to our Facebook page or email to s.luke@Bendigo.vic.gov.au