Friday, November 11, 2011

Chihuly Seaforms

Artist Dale Chihuly makes amazing and beautiful abstract forms out of glass.  This project mimics his series of Seaforms.  I use expandable wire mesh from Dick Blick Art Supplies  and have students cut a circle from the mesh or pre-cut your circles for younger students.  Then you can stretch, bend and shape the mesh into your seaform. 

Next students tear up small bits of tissue paper in the colors of their choice, then dip them lightly in watered down white glue and started wrapping it around the wire forms. If the paper gets too soaked, it will start to fall apart and can be really frustrating to work with, but if its just wet enough to make it stick, it should go on smoothly.  Make sure that students cover every area of the wire mesh and that the tissue paper is flattened smooth against the form; a brush can be helpful with that. It can get a bit tricky and sticky, so I always have a damp rag for each student to wipe off their fingers.  I also find that its best to cover one side of the form and let it dry and then come back for the second side.  As the glue dries, the shape will stiffen.  When the entire form is covered I have students paint a thick coat of Modpodge over the surface to seal the paper and to give a bit of gloss to the surface.  When finished the seaforms with be semi-translucent if displayed in the window.  These pieces could also be displayed for an art show hung from the ceiling like Chihuly ceiling at the Bellagio Hotel

!!!B CR8IV!!!

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