Paul Klee: Head of a Man Collage for Kids

Paul Klee was considered a primitive artist, yet he had the admiration of many of the modern art masters such as Pablo Picasso. It is hard to put him into any art movement, since he was inspired by Expressionism, Cubism and Surrealism.

Klee was so passionate about color, that he taught color theory at the Bauhaus. He said, "Colour has taken possession of me; no longer do I have to chase after it, I know that it has hold of me forever... Colour and I are one. I am a painter."

Inspired by a project over at Art Projects for Kids, we created our own interpretation of his "Head of a Man", using vivid tissue paper instead of paint. There were some glitches along the way...the tissue paper didn't bleed when painted with water like I had planned while I created the sample. So I just used watered down matte medium.

  • Pass out Strathmore 9x12 Bristol Smooth Paper or watercolor paper, like this Canson Bound Watercolor Pad, 30-Sheet and a round cardboard template.
  • With a black Pentel Arts Oil Pastels, allow students to trace the round template which will be the head of the man. Draw shoulders, too. Features can also be lightly sketched.
  • Let students either cut out or tear shapes from multi-colored Tissue Paper. We discovered the gold and silver would not stay down on the paper, even after it was brushed with Liquitex Professional Matte Fluid Medium.
  • Students can begin laying down tissue paper in interesting shapes by brushing it with watered down matte medium.
  • After it is completely dry, have students trace over their drawing with black oil pastel again, to give it a stronger color and presence.

The artwork above was created by an 8th grader.

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