On Day 4 of our family summer art project we examined another cut-paper collage by Henri Matisse in Usborne’s My Very First Art Book. In The Parakeet and the Mermaid we were delighted to recognize one of the same shapes we saw in Les Codomas yesterday, being used multiple times here. There was a bit of an “I Spy” quality to this collage that we liked, although we agreed it was very easy to spot the parakeet and the mermaid! This book offers the same large, colorful art examples as the other Usborne art books we’ve used, with simple corresponding projects that kids can create. The suggested activity with this print is to fold paper in half or in quarters to cut out symmetrical shapes.
There’s also a section in this book on creating torn paper pictures that re-kindled our earlier discussion of collage vs. mosaic art. The example of puzzle art also looked like something that would be fun to try.
In the “Blocks and Shapes” section of this book we examined the use of shapes, pattern, and spacing to create different effects on paper. We’ve noticed that Matisse sometimes leaves a lot of white space in the backgrounds of his cut-paper collages, but other times he fills the entire page with color. The facing print to the first page of this section was High Sky 2 by Bridget Riley. While this is a painting and not a collage, it still intrigued us as a way to arrange color on a page and inspired the pieces at the bottom of this post.
Book used today:
My Very First Art Book by Rosie Dickins