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Implicit Self-Portrait: From 2D Drawing to 3D Installation
FRIDAYS 6:00PM-8:00PM - July 7th & 14th/August 11th & 18th

This workshop aims to teach participants how to create an implicit self-portrait using the blind contour drawing techniques and to turn the drawing into a soft sculpture. By the end of the workshop, participants will have acquired skills in blind contour drawing, implicit self-portraiture, and soft sculpture techniques and will have created a finished artwork. Additionally, the workshop aims to provide an opportunity for students to exhibit their finished pieces.

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Day 1: Blind Contour Self-Portrait Drawing


Introduction to blind contour drawing and its importance in observational drawing. 


Demonstration of how to create a basic contour drawing of a face, focusing on the outer edges of the face and features.

Have students practice blind contour drawing of their self-portrait.

Discuss the importance of observation and how this technique helps to improve drawing skills.

Show examples of other artists' works that use blind contour drawing.


Artists: Henri Matisse, Saul Steinberg

Henri Matisse is one of the artists known for utilizing blind contour drawing early on in his career, and his works are considered some of the most iconic pieces that beautifully combine line and color. Additionally, American artist Saul Steinberg also created unique and charming works through contour drawing. His pieces are characterized by distorted landscapes, figures, and animals that are drawn with lines.


Day 2/3: Implicit Self-Portrait Drawing


Introduce the concept of implicit self-portraits and demonstrate how to create an implicit self-portrait by adding details to a basic contour drawing, focusing on one or two specific features like the eyes or mouth.

Have students create an implicit self-portrait on a piece of cloth, leaving the rest of the cloth blank.

Provide different materials such as fabric markers, embroidery thread, and fabric paint for students to use.

Encourage students to reflect on the symbolism and meaning behind their implicit self-portrait.


Artists: Alexander Kroll, Hedda Sterne, Jacques Lipchitz

Alexander Kroll is an American artist who primarily focuses on creating implicit self-portraits. His works convey a sense of self-portraiture through the structure, movement, and composition of the human body, rather than by drawing facial features in detail.

Hedda Sterne was a Romanian-born American artist who was part of the abstract expressionism movement and also created implicit self-portraits. Her works use lines and forms to convey a sense of the human body, while also revealing the character and emotions of the subjects through the composition and use of colors.

Jacques Lipchitz was a Lithuanian-born American sculptor whose works are regarded as an example of implicit self-portraiture. His sculptures focus on expressing his own identity and personality without drawing the details of the person's face.


Day 4: Creating the Cushion


Demonstrate how to sew the cloth to create a cushion or pillow.

Have students finish their cushions using various materials such as stuffing and fabric for the backside.

Discuss different installation techniques for displaying the cushions.


Installation and Exhibition (DATE TBA)


Install the cushions in an exhibition space, creating an installation art exhibit.

Discuss the significance of displaying the cushions as a group and the visual impact of installation art.

Have students reflect on the exhibition process and their work in the exhibition.


For further inspiration, look at the works of the artist Louise Bourgeois. She has used fabric and sewing in many of her works, including sculptures and installations, and often explored themes of memory, trauma, and family relationships in her works. One of her most famous works is "Cell (Choisy)," an installation of small, fabric rooms that explore themes of confinement and personal history.

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