This month, Arlington, MA community members of all ages participated in a multi-day Whimsical Weavings program at Brackett Elementary School and at the Robbins Library. They discovered how to make colorful, playful weavings utilizing discarded, reusable, recyclable, and natural materials. First, they learned about how textiles have developed and reflected societies throughout the world. Then, they created these personal textile artworks and larger-scale collaborative piece from old garments and biodegradable fibers such as cotton, wool, silk, and jute fibers.
Turtles, beavers, and herons, oh my! In this 8-class program, Project Connection 3rd & 4th graders at Muddy Brook Elementary in Great Barrington, MA learned about the creatures and plants that live in their local pond ecosystems and the critical role these wetlands play in environmental health. They discovered ways to be eco-friendly artists, making their projects from materials such as discarded magazines, newspapers, tissue papers, cardboard, milk paint, natural watercolors, and homemade glue. When dismantled, the materials in the installation will be recycled, composted, or up-cycled for a new project in effort to have zero waste.
Earth Prints all around! This month, we had a great time facilitating this print/mark making workshop for kids and adults on both coasts at California Academy of Sciences, Pickleweed Library in San Rafael, CA, and at the Lucius Beebe Memorial Library in Wakefield, MA. Experimenting with homemade spice and veggie watercolors, mica paints, brushes made from nature, wax, and more, the resulting prints were absolutely beautiful and very unique!
It was a quite a musical summer for us! Among our programs, we facilitated our Upcycled Instruments and Musical Mobiles workshops at lots of libraries on both coasts. Their very fun 2018 Summer Program theme was Libraries Rock! - a perfect fit! Children and adults made wonderful acoustic artworks using utensils, tape roll cores, fallen birch branches, tissue boxes, miscut keys, and more! What fun it was to hear each sound add to the collective as the participants finished their projects o one-by-one. Also, thank you Tricorner News for this great article of our program at Scoville Memorial Library in Salisbury, CT.
We were delighted to work in partnership with The Exploratorium in San Francisco during their Inflatable exhibit this summer! In July, museum-goers reimagined cork, pins, drink tabs and other odds & ends into a fantastic array of Itsy Bitsy Beings in July. Then, in August we returned to create glowing sculptures with kids and their families during our Light Impressions workshop. We had a blast working with over 200 participants!
We celebrated Earth Day 2018 early at the Pine Plains Public Library this past Saturday! Participants in our Multigenerational Eco-Jewelry workshop made wonderfully whimsical earrings, necklaces, and key chains. For their one-of-a-kind pieces, we incorporated de-shelved library books (such as song books, field guides, and encyclopedias!) as well as a variety of items collected from nature. Thank you to all the enthusiastic participants who joined us to experiment with up-cycling materials!
Thank you to all the Brackett Elemenary After School crew who participated in our 2-session bookmaking workshop! Each teacher/artist made personal collage books inspired by their personal histories using discarded books, magazines, catalogue pages, calendars, and more! They explored what home means to them, both past and present, and shared these ideas through the creation of a self-portrait collage book (and some really great haikus!) These were then displayed for their parent-teacher Spring Fling. It was so much fun to learn about everyone and see how each individual visually represented themselves!
We just wrapped up our winter series of workshops at Brackett Elementary School. It was so much fun to return for our 2nd year to work with the K-5 students and staff in the after school program. In our time together, we made glowing Winter Wonder-lanterns and handcrafted many dozens of cards and envelopes in our Valentines - The Green Way! program. Participants learned about the environmental impact on the production of new glass and paper, recycling, and various ways that we can be earth friendly in making art. We look forward to returning in March to do more eco-art projects with this fantastic group!
It was wonderful to be back at Lincoln High School, working with Green Academy students for our fifth year running! This year, 10th and 12th graders participated in our Small Worlds workshop. They reflected on memories and significant places in their lives. They depicted these ideas using found images in magazines, postcards, old photographs and created 3D collages inside small boxes. Special thanks to our TA's Haya and Gianna.
"The workshop was very fun. I enjoyed working with all the materials. I would recommend this to to others. Thank you for a wonderful art class." - Workshop Participant
This weekend, we had the privilege of facilitating our Winter Wonder-landscape workshop at Memorial Hall Library in Andover, MA. It was wonderful to see the enthusiasm of children creating art with grandparents, and daughters alongside their parents. Participants made beautiful accordion books of snow-filled mountain landscapes, polar animal habitats, and more!
This December, we participated in the Tis The Season For Science event at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. At our tables, museum goers had the opportunity to express their ideas of very cold and far away landscapes. Inside tiny boxes they incorporated their imagery in mini-dioramas and crafted an environment for their chosen Arctic or Antarctic animal. The event atmosphere was complete with falling snow in the museum atrium!
"What a great workshop! Our Girl Scouts had an absolute blast and me too! Love the craft itself and the concept of green art was well." - Parent/Troop Leader
With perfect timing, our first snowfall of the season arrived on the morning our our girl scout workshop. Inspired by the weather, daisies and brownies from troops in Northeastern MA joined us to make Winter Wonder-lanterns. First, they learned about the life-cycles of glass and paper and then creatively upcycled jars, deshelved library books, magazines, junk mail envelopes, and tissue paper into beautiful light-filled artworks.
This Fall, Paul Revere School 3rd & 4th graders participated in a Paper Palate residency program. They learned about the life-cycle of paper, food sustainability, and culture by creating a paper food Japanese restaurant. On the final day of the program the students celebrated their creative work by serving their colorful paper bento boxes, sushi and tea to their peers.
"Always looking for ways to recycle! This is great, creative, fun, useful. I can never say I don’t have a card when I can make one! Thank you!" -Art Cards Participant @ Falmouth Library
This summer, we enjoyed facilitating numerous workshops at libraries throughout the Bay State, including programs in Falmouth, Kingston, Acushnet, Reading, and Andover, to name a few! Among our programs, we had a wonderful group of participants make Art Cards - The Green Way at Falmouth Library using de-shelved books, magazines, maps, and discarded mail. Also, at our family-friendly workshop at Acushnet, kids and their parents made all sorts of cute, creepy, and humorous Itsy Bitsy Beings. The creativity that went into these 3D assemblage pieces from paper and metal scraps was very impressive!
This winter, each class at Glen Park Elementary School participated in a special Pop-Up Habitat program focused on the neighborhood ecosystem of Glen Park Canyon! The k-5 students created their own wearable art and became the creatures that inhabit this landscape using improv and other drama techniques. It is very exciting to see this program culminate through both visual and dramatic self-expression.
In this 5-week Green Art Workshop series, BASP kindergarten-5th graders became eco-conscious artists. Utilizing everyday discarded materials, they first experimented with drawing and collaging patterns from their imaginations and from observations of the school environment. Next, participants learned to make handmade paper from flyers, egg cartons, old paper, and junk mail. Finally, students brought these elements together to design unique quilt blocks. These individual “green” artworks now form the giant collaborative paper quilt that is displayed in the school library.
Students from Willie Brown Middle School had the opportunity to engage in SCRAP in a rather unconventional way during the Community Cartographers workshop! During their field trips, they led each other on blindfolded tours and created sensory maps of their journeys, focusing on their sense of touch and sound. The middle schoolers also explored the artistic potential of mapping further by up-cycling old maps, using collage and embroidery techniques to depict a personal story.
This May, we returned to Bryant Elementary and worked with each class to create a collaborative paper quilt installed at in their School. The students learned about the African American quilting tradition of Gee’s Bend, Alabama. Inspired by the Gee’s Bend quilts and images of San Francisco, the participants designed their own quilt blocks using various colors of paper scraps.
This spring, we facilitated Fresh StART, our teacher training program, with teens at Balboa High School. In March and April, the students met with GAW teaching artists to do a variety of green art projects such as Dreamscape Books, Mapping Personal Journeys, Cork Abstractions, and Ephemeral Nature Sculptures. (Thank you Patti Pauchnick, Laura Boles Faw, and Miles Epstein!) Inspired by the artists, hands-on making, and a visit to SCRAP, the teens then designed their own green art lesson. The program concluded with students teaching their unique creative re-use projects to their peers at Balboa.