ACTION PAINTING for the kids

Recently, January 29, 2014, Livingston American School held its first Action Painting/Action Drawing event in the school auditorium. This event was part of the yearly art show, as well as the weekly house events held at LAS to promote teamwork and creativity among the students. The art teacher, Ms. Yolanda Pascual, organized the event to use games and art history presentations that would help the students to practice and understand Action Art concepts. The event was successful, as all of the secondary students participated with enthusiasm.

Ms. Yolanda selected three representative artists of the 20th century, as well as one 21st century artist. Action painting was a product of World War II. At that time, Jackson Pollock –in America- and Yves Klein –in Europe- started to experiment with new processes in their art work. Art was redefined as an act more than an object, as a process more than a product. This crucial moment in art history laid the foundation for several 20th century art movements: Happenings & Fluxus, Conceptual Art, Performance Art, Installation Art and Earth Art.

Students emulated Yves Klein's "Blue Period Anthropometries" in a game. Two students worked together to create their version of a Klein's blue paintings. One student played the artist role and the other student was the paintbrush. The artist used the brush to create a design on the large white canvas that was placed on the floor.

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Other students worked at emulating Pollock's work using LAS's four house colors (red, white, black and silver).

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There was also time for the students to focus on creating works inspired by the multidisplinary artist Dennis Oppenheim. His performance "Two stage transfer drawing" could be considered action drawing. LAS students emulated him: one partner would draw on the other students back with a chopstick, the second student would try and recreate the drawing they felt on their back, onto the paper.

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The youngest artist revisisted was Tony Orrico, who has got very popular in the last years with his energetic action drawings. One of the students had an excellent performance in this physically demanding game.

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We had a lot of fun in an art appreciation day. Not only did students learn about different styles of art, but they also used their physical strength and endurance to create the art! It was an exhausting and inspiring day!