Who I Am.

A 6-hour project with a group of 18 ninth-grade students.

The artist, Deborah Hickman, will lead the creation of a hand-made book as part of the culminating art project of an eight week Art and Writing Inquiry Based Learning Course, titled “Who Am I? Self-Portraits in Art and Writing". Over the course of the eight weeks, students explore their identity through creating a series of self-portraits and written reflections. They examine where they come from and who they are as individuals, the self they allow others to see and the inner-self hidden from most, as well as their most memorable and significant moments. They undergo this self-examination with the goal of creating pieces of art and writing that encompass the different dimensions of who they are as individuals. The students will finish the course with the creation of a hand-made book which will house both their art and written reflections.
The PAINTS project will entail Deborah leading the students through the creation of hand-made books including portrait collages for the front and back covers. The front cover would involve the creation of a black and white self-portrait. These black and white portraits will be the most literal of the self-portraits the students will create and will involve selective symbolism: symbolic colours, significant words, phrases and images. Paper weaving, including a variety of woven patterns i.e. twill, goose eye etc., will form the structure of the cover incorporating the b & w portrait/written phrases, painted paper strips and other elements. In creating both the front and back covers of their books, the students will be learning about structure through the technique of weaving. Pre-Workshop: Planning, gathering and purchasing materials. Day 1 (2 hrs): Woven paper structure samplers/preparation for woven paper portraits. Day 2 (2 hrs): Weaving paper portraits using black and white portrait drawings and painted colour strips (personal symbolic colours and patterns). Mounting of portraits on book cover cardboard. Day 3 (2 hrs): Handmade books using card stock paper and light cardboard covers, employing the Coptic stitch. Mounting portraits on cover.