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Monochromatic Self Portraits


Artists in Schools

Monochromatic Self Portraits

Dispatches from CMA Resident Artist Maria D. Rapicavoli's after school class at Hudson Guild.

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Fourth graders at Hudson Guild are taking a deep dive into color theory under the tutelage of CMA Artist in Residence Maria D. Rapicavoli.

Following a discussion of Picasso’s Blue Period paintings, students were encouraged to transfer any negative emotions into a monochromatic self-portrait, yielding beautiful and emotive works. 

In Maria's words,

“Two students walked into my class crying and annoyed. Neither wanted to work. I introduced Picasso and described that he often used the color blue to express his emotions. I then invited them to think of moments when they were sad and to release their sadness by transferring it to a monochromatic self portrait. Art can help us express our feelings, and because sadness is such a strong emotion, it can generate strong paintings. It brought me joy to see that both students were inspired by the lesson and made beautiful self portraits. At the end of the class, both left happy.”

Maria's work at Hudson Guild is supported by the Emergency Arts Education Fund, which provides free arts education to NYC school communities whose art programs have been decimated by recent budget cuts.

Children’s Museum of the Arts’ three Residents Artists are currently implementing ambitious arts curriculum at each of our partner sites throughout New York City: Hudson Guild in Chelsea, Sid Miller Academy in Crown Heights, and Children’s Workshop School in the East Village. Come spring, our residents will showcase their students' work through exhibitions and installations across the city. Learn how you can support the work of our residents here.

Crown Heights, Brooklyn

End of Year Celebration at P396K Sid Miller Academy

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