ARTPlay: Joaquin Torres-Garcia – Words and Pictures

[ 0 ] September 27, 2007 |

By Marianne Ruggiero
Coordinator of Family Programs at The RISD Museum

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Note: The images of artwork from The RISD Museum collection will remain on the Kidoinfo website for only 3 months as requested by the Museum. Although the images have been removed, kids may still enjoy doing some of the following projects.
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Could you describe your favorite place purely in terms of the objects – great or small – you’ve seen there? Joaquin Torres-Garcia, Uruguayan by birth but a world traveler for most of his life, created such city word-pictures. New York City was “enormous surfaces with a thousand rectangular openings… elevators… trains, underground subways, numbers, 56, 56, 56, passing rapidly on the post…” The artist used to ask his friends to read this description, as fast as they could, to get a sense of the bustling life of the city. See if you can do this as well.

The French port city of Dunkerk was “harbor, dock, cranes… compass… telescope, helm wheel… rope ladder… heavy, static ships.” Think about the movement of ships in comparison to that of trains and subways. Would you read this city word-picture quickly or slowly?

Now you try it!
On a piece of paper, write the name of the city where you live or choose a place that you have visited. Make a “word picture” like Torres-Garcia to describe it. Parents can help write down the words for the younger kids. Try to write down six to ten words that describe the city.

…………………………………….. …………………………………….. ……………………………………..
(City)

…………………………………….. …………………………………….. ……………………………………..

Torres-Garcia lived at a time when many people traveled from one continent to another – say New York to France – by ship. In his painting 1943 America, we see a steamship that the artist has envisioned as brightly colored interlocking shapes, almost like a jigsaw puzzle. Can you tell from this painting that Torres-Garcia also designed wooden toys?1943-America Torres-Garcia

What would this painting look like with different colors and a few extra details? Click to upload an outline drawing of the painting, and color it with pencils, cray pas, or markers. Add extra details, if you like. Something you may find swimming in the ocean? Flying overhead?

Credits for Artwork:

Joaquin Torres-Garcia
Uruguayan, 1874-1949
1943 America, 1943
Oil on board, 23.625 ” x 27.75 ”
The Nancy Sayles Day Collection of Modern Latin American Art
Photograph by Erik Gould

Aztec, Monkey
around 1325-1521
Volcanic stone, 14 ” x 10 1/2 ”
Mary B. Jackson Fund
Photograph by Erik Gould.

ARTplay is a monthly column written by Marianne Ruggiero from The RISD Museum in which various themes and activities will introduce kids and parents to the museum’s collection both online and off. Each month Kidoinfo will help spark your children’s interest in art — they can learn about different works at the museum and download a related activity to create offline. Be sure to visit the museum and explore the art in person. On Free-for-All Saturdays (the last Saturday of every month), kids may continue their exploration through a variety of hands-on workshops, performances, videos, and special gallery quests throughout the day.

All additional inquires or requests should be directed to: Melody Ennis, Coordinator of Photographic Services, The RISD Museum, 224 Benefit Street, Providence, RI 02903. 401 454-6535. E-mail inquires to: mennis@risd.edu

Category: activities: indoor, art, ARTplay-RISD


Anisa Raoof

about the author ()

Anisa Raoof is the publisher of Kidoinfo.com. She combines being a mom with her experience as an artist, designer, psych researcher and former co-director of the Providence Craft Show to create the go-to spot for families in Rhode Island and beyond. She loves using social media to connect parents with family-related businesses and services and promoting ways for parents to engage offline with their kids. Anisa believes in the power of working together and loves to find ways to collaborate with others. An online enthusiast, still likes to unplug often by reading books and magazines, drawing, learning to knit, making pop-up books with her two sons and listening to records with her husband.

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