Now that it is officially spring, I love going outdoors to enjoy fresh air, sunshine, and exercise—and to explore nature. The artist Jephan de Villiers (HEFF-an duh vil-ee-AY) was inspired by the things he found in nature. As a child, de Villiers was often sick, which forced him to spend a lot of time in his bedroom. Being inside so much made him appreciate the outdoors even more. Leaves, branches, nuts, feathers, and fungi became his art supplies.
In our Play Date with Art program this month, we imagined what we’d be wearing in the future, and then we used found materials to bring our vision to life. You can do the same at home, using materials from around your house! Your designs can be anything you want. Think of future styles, or think of a special occasion you’d like to dress up for.
Having to stay inside can get dull—especially if it’s too cold, too windy, or too rainy to play outside. I find myself staring out my window quite a lot these days. It got me thinking: what could make my window more fun? How could I make my indoors more colorful while also sharing some fun with my neighbors, who may be looking out their windows? For our first at-home art activity, I drew inspiration from leaded stained glass windows!
A tangram is a puzzle made of seven shapes that together form a large square. The shapes can be arranged in many different ways to resemble things in the world around us—or create interesting patterns. Here’s how you can create your own set of tangrams to use at home!
Take a quick art break, and learn more about three of the works featured in A Modern Vision: European Masterworks from The Phillips Collection with Tanya Paul, Isabel and Alfred Bader Curator of European Art.