Adult Program + Children/Family Program + Educator Workshop

Encaustic, meaning "to burn in," dates back to the fifth century B.C.  Used as a contemporary medium it is a versatile method of painting with a beeswax-based paint kept molten on a heated palette. In addition to seeing a slide presentation on the history and contemporary use of encaustic, participants will learn about safe studio set up, how to prepare supports and make encaustic medium, and wax application. Techniques such as fusing, color mixing, layering, masking, scraping, etching a line, collaging and embedding found objects will be used with materials such as impasto modeling wax, pigment sticks, graphite and Xerox image transfers. Demonstrations will be introduced between work blocks allowing students ample time to experiment with techniques. 

Drawing is the backbone of all forms of visual arts. Led by artist John Whalley, this course will offer a practical introduction to traditional drawing skills. Proportion, composition and the use of line and value to describe form, space and texture will all be explored. Hands-on demonstrations will introduce these skills, and will include the use of media such as graphite, charcoal, conte crayon and ink.

Paste paper decoration is an old technique of creating patterned paper. It is also a colorful and expressive way of making beautiful, varied papers useful for book arts, paper sculpture and collage, and is also a wonderful surface to write or print on. In the first class, students will decorate the papers and in the second class, learn ways to use them.

Led by award-winning poet Kathleen Ellis, this workshop will explore connections between poetry and the visual arts, using the museum’s exhibitions, Rockland’s waterfront and the historic Olson House as sources for writing. This year’s focus will be on the exhibitions of Alex Katz’s portrait and landscape paintings and Louise Nevelson’s sculpture. Experimentation with various wide, tall, and stringy poetic forms will be used to jump-start new work. Participants will expand their range of possibilities using writing exercises, word games, found objects and daily group critiques.

Have you ever wondered how frescos are made? Join artist Barbara Sullivan for a hands-on exploration of this age-old medium. During this three-day intensive, students will develop an understanding and appreciation of true buon fresco (painting into freshly laid wet plaster) both within an art historical context, as well as in practical applications. Students will learn the many steps involved, such as how to prepare substrates, arriccio and intonaco layers of plaster, how to grind pigments, and how to know when the plaster is ready to accept paint. All these techniques will be put into practice as students design and execute their own portable fresco panels.

Featured Exhibit: Four in Maine: Site-Specific
On view through December 2010
The Farnsworth Art Museum’s Curatorial staff will give a walking tour of the new exhibition, Four in Maine: Site Specific, for teachers interested in learning more about this exhibition showcasing the work of four Maine artists. The tour will be followed by a catered reception in the museum library.
Nevelson built sculptures by seeing the beauty in materials and shapes; in the arrangement of forms she saw their harmony with one another. Her approach is recognizable as assemblage or collage in her sculpture and printmaking. Connections between these art forms, with emphasis upon Nevelson prints in the Farnsworth collection, will be discussed.
"In making a portrait, I attempt to reveal something of the psychological and emotional depth of the individual, but also something more archetypal, what it means to be human—to have a past, passions, and a spirit." –Martha Miller
In this class students will be guided in creating portraits that go beyond rendering and speak of the inner workings of each individual. They will create self-portraits as well as work from live models using an array of mixed media drawing media including pastels, charcoal, oils, and pencil.  
Relief printing is the oldest and most direct method of making an impression on paper. Participants in this workshop will experience the medium of linoleum by designing and cutting their own bold, simple design motifs inspired by natural forms. The unique properties of linoleum will be explored through the consideration of line quality, texture, pattern and the relationship between negative and positive shapes. Participants will create a personal inventory of designs on same sized blocks which they will use to experiment with a variety of printing options in black and white and color. Registration using the key block and reduction methods will be introduced.
Is a tree really green?  Is its shadow really grey?  Is a red apple really red?  In An Eye For Color we will pay homage to color pioneer Josef Albers by working with ColorAid paper to, say, make two different colors look identical, or to make color shapes look like they vibrate and dance right off the page.  By creating surprising optical illusions, students will discover exciting moments of color so often taken for granted in the world around us and in art.  “A-ha!” will be our class motto as we learn to see in a new and exciting light.