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HOMEWORK HELP: BRIDGET RILEY

Posted 14 April 2015 by Kat

Have a look at this painting. Does it make your eyes feel funny?

Bridget Riley, Fall, 1963, © Bridget Riley

Bridget Riley, Fall, 1963, © Bridget Riley

When Bridget Riley first exhibited her black and white abstract paintings in the 1960s, people were amazed at how they seemed to move. It was like she was painting with electricity and the patterns were live wires!

This style of painting is known as Op art, which is when the artist overlaps colours and patterns to make an optical illusion. This can make it look like its moving when you move!

Bridget Riley was born in 1931 in London, but when World War II broke out, she left the city and moved to Cornwall. She would walk along the coastline and explore the caves where she would sit and watch the reflections in rock pools. She also liked looking at the sea and how the light made it change colour during the day.

In 1960, she went to Venice where she saw sculptures by the Italian artist Umberto Boccioni. Here is one of his sculptures.

Umberto Boccioni, Unique Forms of Continuity in Space 1913, cast 1972.  c. Tate

Umberto Boccioni, Unique Forms of Continuity in Space 1913, cast 1972. c. Tate

Riley wanted to make paintings that had curves like Boccioni’s sculptures, like this one here.

Bridget Riley, Fragment 2/10 1965 © Bridget Riley 2014. All rights reserved, courtesy Karsten Schubert, London

Bridget Riley, Fragment 2/10 1965 © Bridget Riley 2014. All rights reserved, courtesy Karsten Schubert, London

She also started experimenting with colour, mixing warm and cold colours together, like red and blue, in order to make the paintings vibrant. She travelled to many different countries, like Egypt and India, and looked closely at the way the artists in those countries used colour. She was interested in the way hot countries used very bright colours to stop them fading in the sun.

This painting is called Nataraja and is inspired by a trip she made to India. Nataraja means Lord of the Dance, and refers to the Hindu god Shiva.

Bridget Riley, Nataraja 1993. © Bridget Riley 2014. All rights reserved, courtesy Karsten Schubert, London

Bridget Riley, Nataraja 1993. © Bridget Riley 2014. All rights reserved, courtesy Karsten Schubert, London

She thought this painting looked a bit like a dance too, with its diagonal lines and bright colours. Do you think it does? The composition of the painting is quite simple, just a lot of rectangles, but sometimes the simplest things can seem complex.

What do you think of Riley’s work? Do you think you could make some Op Art in Spin or Tate Paint?

Let us know in the comments! :)

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HOMEWORK HELP: YVES KLEIN

Posted 8 April 2015 by Kat

Who’s Yves Klein, I hear you cry??

Yves Klein was an awesome French artist who invented his own colour! He called it International Klein Blue or IKB for short.

Here is a picture of it:

Yves Klein, IKB 79, 1959, © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2015

Yves Klein, IKB 79, 1959, © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2015

This is number 79 of about 200 paintings he made using IKB. We call these paintings monochrome paintings. Monochrome means one colour, so a monochrome painting is a painting that only includes one colour.

So I suppose you are wondering why he invented a colour?

It all started in 1947, when three young artist friends were on holiday in Nice, France. On a beautifully sunny day, they decided to carve up the world between them. One would take the land, another the air and the last would take the sky. Yves Klein was the artist who took the sky.

Klein saw the sky as a place where an artist could be free, to think his or her own thoughts without being influenced by what people thought on the ground.

There is a photograph of Klein leaping into the air, it looks as if he is flying, but really the photograph is a fake!

Yves Klein Leap into the Void 1960 © Yves Klein, ADAGP, Paris Photo: Shunk–Kender  © Roy Lichtenstein Foundation

Yves Klein
Leap into the Void 1960
© Yves Klein, ADAGP, Paris
Photo: Shunk–Kender
© Roy Lichtenstein Foundation

Klein made the photograph to show us how free we might be if we could leap into space. IKB was the colour he imagined pure space might be.

Klein was also interested in the way we attach different emotions to colour. Like anger to red or jealousy to green.

What emotion do you think Klein thought IKB might have?

Klein was an important figure in post-war art. He was a member of the Nouveau Réaliste movement that began in France in the 1950s.

Nouveau Réalism was a bit like Pop Art, in that the artists used everyday objects in their paintings. They also staged happenings, which were a bit like performances.

Klein once staged a happening where he painted naked women in IKB and then the women pressed their bodies onto paper, it was considered very shocking at the time.

Sadly Klein died from a heart attack in Paris in 1962 when he was only 34. Who knows what exciting things he might have created had he lived longer…

—-

Do you like Klein’s artwork? If you could make a colour what would it be?

Have you tried to make artwork in just one colour? If you have we’d love to see it! Upload it to your own My Gallery or email us!

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HOMEWORK HELP: HERBERT BAYER

Posted 1 April 2015 by Kat

Hello there!

We really want to make Tate Kids as helpful and as fun as possible and you guys have said you want more help with your art homework! So here it is! EVERY WEDNESDAY you can come here to have a weekly introduction to some of your most favourited artists on Tate Kids.

One of your favourite artists is the cool and quirky Herbert Bayer – but who is Herbert Bayer?

Herbert Bayer, Four Segmented Circles 1970 © DACS, 2015

Herbert Bayer, Four Segmented Circles 1970 © DACS, 2015

Herbert Bayer was a graphic artist and a photographer who was born in Austria in 1900. When he was 21 he went to Weimar in Germany to study architecture at The Bauhaus. The Bauhaus was a radical new art and design school that wanted to do great things. The founder was an architect called Walter Gropius who wanted to combine all art forms, like painting, sculpture, design and architecture, into one single art form and call it craft. He thought painters could also be architects and designers could also be sculptors and that they didn’t have to stick to just one thing.

Herbert Bayer also thought this. So after he finished his studies he began teaching printing and advertising at the school. While he was there he decided to design a simple typeface because he found the lettering used in Germany too ornate and serious. He called his new typeface Universal. It only used lowercase letters and this is what it looks like:

Herbert Bayer, Tipografía Universal, 1926.

Herbert Bayer, Tipografía Universal, 1926.

In 1928 he started taking photographs and became interested in Surrealism, which was a new form of art where artists tried to show their dreams. Bayer began making strange photomontages of floating hands and eyes.

Then in 1937 Herbert Bayer had to leave Germany. He had become unpopular with the Nazi government, who did not like art that was experimental and open to new ideas. They held an exhibition of all the art they thought was bad and they called it Degenerate Art. Herbert Bayer’s art was in the exhibition, and after that he was not allowed to work as an artist or a designer. So he left Germany and went to America.

This painting was made in America in 1970 and is called Chromatic Twist, 1970. It is an example of geometric abstraction, which was a style of art that had been taught at the Bauhaus. Geometric abstract painting consist of very simple shapes, like a square or a circle, which appear to be floating in space.

Herbert Bayer, Chromatic Twist 1970 © DACS, 2015

Herbert Bayer, Chromatic Twist 1970 © DACS, 2015

Bayer’s paintings and designs continue to inspire young graphic artists today and his typeface is used all over the world.

Have you seen the use of Bayer’s paintings or font anywhere recently?

What do you think of his work? Do you like this style of art? Which is your favourite artwork by Herbert Bayer?

Have you tried to make a painting or drawing inspired by Bayer? If you have, we’d love to see! Upload it to My Gallery or email it us kids@tate.org.uk

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Digital Photography Workshop at Tate Britain

Posted 17 March 2015 by Kat

Hi guys!

Here’s an event for you that we think you might like! ;)

Head down to Tate Britain next weekend to explore the magic of photographic image-making from digital to chemical. Create a digital negative from your own digital photograph and then make a cyanotype print to take home. We want you to be inspired by the exhibition Salt and Silver: Early Photography 1840-1860.

This man with his cool horse wants you to be inspired.

Jean-Baptiste Frénet, Horse and Groom, 1855© Wilson Centre for Photography

Jean-Baptiste Frénet, Horse and Groom, 1855© Wilson Centre for Photography

The workshop is led by the artist Luca Damiani who made this awesome Digital Kit for you all recently if you haven’t already checked it out.

Digital to Chemical: Photo Processing Workshop is on Saturday 28 March 2015, at 11am at Tate Britain, in the Taylor Digital Studio. It’s a FREE workshop too!

We can’t wait to see what you make! See you there!

Photo: Luca Damiani

This is what you could make! Wow! Photo: Luca Damiani

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Top 5 Mother’s Day Gifts

Posted 13 March 2015 by Kat

We all know it’s tricky to find that perfect gift for Mums on Mothering Sunday. Either way, we think the small, thoughtful and creative things are the best!

1. Breakfast in bed
There is nothing better than being in your pyjamas and having someone bring you tea and toast. Henri Hayden’s breakfast looks yummy! Are those waffles? What else could you put on this breakfast tray? Maybe you could have a go at making her favourite pancakes…she deserves it!

Henri Hayden, Brown Still Life, 1968 © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2015

Henri Hayden, Brown Still Life, 1968 © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2015

2. A performance
Do you like to sing or dance like these kids below? Sit your mum down, turn on the spotlights and dedicate a performance to her. Maybe a ballet or a dance routine to her favourite song? If you play an instrument you could write her a song? I think a set and decorations are needed like this Nigel Henderson photograph, what else could you use in your performance?

Nigel Henderson, Photograph showing a group of children performing to mark the Coronation, 1953, © Nigel Henderson Estate

Nigel Henderson, Photograph showing a group of children performing to mark the Coronation, 1953, © Nigel Henderson Estate

3. Flowers
Yes this is a pretty standard gift and may lack a bit of imagination…but who wouldn’t love to receive a bunch of their favourite spring flowers!? You could even make your own paper flowers! Jeff Koons made his out of glass! What other materials could you make a flower arrangement out of?

Jeff Koons, Mound of Flowers 1991, © Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons, Mound of Flowers 1991, © Jeff Koons

4. An ‘anything’ voucher
Every day is Mother’s Day really! So if everyone is busy and you can’t spend the day with your mum, design and send her a voucher to use whenever she wants! Be that a promise to wash the car or to go and pick up the newspaper from the shops. I’m sure it will come in handy! Make your voucher as pretty as possible, maybe use different coloured paper like this artwork below.

Patrick Caulfield, The Letter 1967, © The estate of Patrick Caulfield. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2015

Patrick Caulfield, The Letter 1967, © The estate of Patrick Caulfield. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2015

5. Your own masterpiece
The fridge door is looking a little empty. Why not make a collage about your Mum (or Grandmother as she’s a Mother too!) to stick on the fridge? Make a sculpture or paint a portrait. Whatever you think represents your mum the best! You could even make an artwork on Tate Kids and email it her with a Happy Mother’s Day message! We think she’ll love anything you make! ;)

We’d love to see and hear about what you are gifting your Mother with this Sunday! Email us or let us know in the comments below!

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