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Family Activity Inspired by Marisol's Tea for Three

Marisol combined bright colors, geometric shapes, found objects, and other various materials to create her life-sized figure sculptures. The artist often used herself both as inspiration and as a model for her work. Sometimes Marisol included plaster casts of her own face in her sculptures, as seen in Tea for Three, 1960.

In this activity, we’ll create a self-portrait inspired by Marisol's work using different colored paper shapes assembled on a background.

Tea for Three

Marisol (Venezuelan and American, born France, 1930–2016). Tea for Three, 1960. Wood, acrylic, and found objects, 64 x 22 x 27 inches (162.56 x 55.88 x 68.58 cm). Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; Bequest of Marisol, 2016 (2018:16a-d). © Estate of Marisol / Albright-Knox Art Gallery / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Getting Started

Let’s think about some of the things that make up and celebrate who we are.

  • What elements will you include in your portrait?
  • What colors or shapes might you choose?
  • What details could you add that reflect your interests?

Materials

  • Construction paper (or scrapbook paper, magazine pages, or packaging) in different colors
  • Markers
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick (or tape)

Artmaking Activity

1. Draw the outline of a face on a piece of paper with a marker pen.

2. Next, pick a couple of different colored papers to make your mouth, eyes, nose, and cheeks. You can also use a scrap of the same paper you used for the face to draw two eyelid shapes. Draw these elements with your marker pen using simple geometric shapes.

3. Next, cut out the shapes and stick them to the face with your glue stick.

4. Now pick a color to create your body and draw a simple t-shirt shape.

5. Pick a color to use for your hair. You can give yourself any hairstyle you like!

6. Then draw some arm shapes.

7. Cut out your t-shirt, hair, and arms and assemble the shapes on your background color. Then stick them down with your glue stick.

8. Finally, add some details to the face with your marker pen and decorate your t-shirt and background with other pictures, drawings, or cut-outs that celebrate you!

Optional: Share your creation on Twitter or Instagram with #AlbrightKnox and #MuseumFromHome!

Vocabulary

Collage: a piece of art made by sticking different materials such as pieces of paper or fabric onto a backing

Figurative: the representation of the human body in art

Geometric shapes: circles, rectangles, squares, or triangles that have perfect, uniform measurements and don’t often appear in nature

Sculpture: an art form in which materials are worked into three-dimensional objects

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