top of page

"Little clown, my heart, Spangled again and lopsided..."

ART YARD Advanced Studio achieved surprising wonderful results this week!

Teaching Artist Ed Rath set up the Di Chirico inspired still life objects in a new configuration. Then demonstrated a particular way of drawing using short staccato marks to develop form, volume and space. A style we know well from the work of Vincent van Gogh. As we thought about approaching ink drawing in a new way, it was inspiring to look carefully at examples of van Gogh’s drawings!

Vincent van Gogh, "Street in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer", 1888

As Ed and I watched Advanced Studio artists we noted that everyone had a relaxed posture and were working with swift decisive marks!

The completed pieces are fresh, energetic, exciting and all successful! This sure made for a lively discussion at critique.

Before we stopped for critique Ed showed us his work in two newly published catalogues of his own Sumi ink drawings. Ed and his work travel today to Japan for an art-centric adventure.

Vera and I got in early to organize and cull through supplies. We are so fortunate to have Vera on board as ART YARD Intern! Big thanks to Vera for all of her hard work!


Teaching Artist Iviva Olenick worked closely with 2 cohorts of student artists, at MS 226 our partnership school in South Ozone Park, in a lesson on reflective collages.

Inspired by the works of contemporary artist Cara Lynch, in which reflective material is partially obscured by surface texture, Iviva developed a lesson using reflective paper in which the viewer sees only a part of themselves.

Cara Lynch, "I'm Here For You, Call Me Now", 2017

Iviva led discussions about non-literal reflections; reflections of who they are inside versus how they look to others. Students made lists of hobbies, interests, activities, and elements from nature to represent themselves.

They drew images from their lists on the backs of silver and gold reflective paper, and cut them out and carefully considered composition while arranging and then gluing. They added identifying details by building and overlapping. Some made collages fully gold on gold, or silver on silver, while others opted to use gold on silver or vice versa.

Student work in progress with reflection of Dennis taking photo!

At our partnership school in Jersey City, PS 6, students continued with Teaching Artist Richard Estrin's lessons about the various modes of package delivery and symmetry.

Students, when asked, said they were up to a challenge - and challenged they were!

Using cardboard, representing the delivery of Amazon packages, 4th and 5th graders cut out shapes in multiples to create sculptures of the various types of delivery. These types included elephants, trucks, boats, drones and even a fish (the student DID have a logical explanation for this choice). The challenge was the cutting the cardboard neatly with scissors. On hand to assist were Sarah, Leslie and Dennis (with their trusty X-acto blades) - when assistance was needed.

The afternoon group of students talked about symmetry and looked around the art room for examples of things symmetrical. They referred to their works from last week where they folded colored paper in half and cut out designs which opened up into perfectly symmetrical pieces. Drawing on squares of cardboard (either replicating their designs from last week or creating new ones), students added texture by gluing rice, beans, lentils and plastic coffee stirrers. This process resulted in gorgeous works which will be used a printing plates for next week's class.

PS 6 not only celebrated Valentine's Day on Friday but all students acknowledged being 100 days smarter as it was the 100th day of school. To mark the occasion, lower grades dressed appropriately as 100 year old people but remained their cheery, optimistic and youthful selves.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

P.S. My grandfather found this pin on the floor of the auto parts store when I was about 10 years old.  I wear it every Valentine's Day!

"... Alley-oop and here we go Into the froth, my life, Into the Flames!" ~ Sandra Cisneros, Little Clown, My Heart

83 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page