Personal Statement

Personal Statement

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Kid Stuff: The McGlinchey Emerging Artists Program

The McGlinchey Emerging Artists Program was founded on July 8, 2012, at around 10 pm, when co-founders Mom (that would be moi) and Big Kid (that would be the Big Kid) both found that they could not sleep, so they started messing around with the "merchandise" procured by the Little Kid during our weekend trip to the Dallas Museum of Art and the Nasher Sculpture Garden.  (More on our DNA/Nasher trip after I locate the cable that transfers photos from my camera to my computer.  It seems to have gone missing, and complicating the search is the fact that Spouse is in the process of reinstalling televisions, DVD players and satellite boxes all over the house, meaning that right now MY CUP RUNNETH OVER WITH DECEPTIVELY SIMILAR LOOKING AV CABLES.  Seriously, how does one family acquire so many?)

For now, suffice it to say that my pint-sized Picasso REALLY DUG THE DMA AND THE NASHER, and with good reason.  I'm not the world's biggest Dallas fan, but I am adding both museums to my list of "Things Worth Driving to Dallas For."  Also on the list:  the Dallas Arboretum, the Dallas World Aquarium and - yeah, that's pretty much it.  Did I mention I'm not the world's biggest Dallas fan?


It took the Little Kid a few minutes to warm to the DMA, which surprised me, given (1) the breadth of its permanent collection and (2) his general level of nutsiness for all things art-related.  But then we hit the first of several sculptural galleries, and then it was, "Can I use your camera phone?"  After that, the tour was basically "PJ snaps a pic of a sculpture with his Dad's phone while Mom snaps a pic of PJ snapping a pic, because, seriously, how cute is that look of concentration on his scrunched-up little face?"  Three sculpture galleries in, he announced, "Okay, I like this place, and I like Dallas, sort of [child after my own heart], and in honor of my second trip to Dallas [it was, like, his twentieth], I require merchandise."  Hmmm?  "MERCHANDISE.  From the gift shop.  I distinctly remember passing one, and I would like some merchandise from it so that I will forever remember this trip."  Fair enough.  And, for future reference, there is an actual WORD for this concept.  It's "souvenir."  But I am afraid that, henceforth, souvenirs in the McGlinchey family shall forever be referred to as "merchandise."  Because, again, HOW FLIPPIN' CUTE IS THAT?

So the "merchandise" that PJ selected (with a little guidance from Mom) was Marion Deuchars' "Let's Make Some Great Art" doodle book:

The McGlincheys are a doodle book-loving people generally, but this one wins big-time points for containing some really great information about art techniques, color theory, famous artists, et cetera.  For example, this snippet about Matisse:

Did you get the pun?  "SNIP"pet?  Because it's about paper collages?  Anyway.  The Little Kid got this book, and some watercolor pencils, and while we were killing time at the hotel between our museum trip and Uncle P's wedding, we had fun practicing shading and cross-hatching and learning about the origin of various colors. ("Purple" comes from "purpura," a reference to the sea snails that Cleopatra ordered murdered IN THE MILLIONS, because she really liked the color that was derived thereby.  As an owner of real estate in the snail-infested 'hood of Arlington Heights, I have to say that Cleopatra's approval rating with me is at an all-time high.  Any snail-murdering broad is a friend of mine.)

Now we're back home, and I am wide awake on account of all of the sleeping that I did after experiencing my first migraine. Forgot to mention that, apparently, I GET MIGRAINES NOW.  Awesome, right?  The vertigo, the weird visual thing that I recall thinking seemed awfully similar to how I've heard a migraine aura described (BECAUSE IT WAS A MIGRAINE AURA, DIMWIT!), the nausea, the throbbing at the back of my skull - yup, apparently this thing has a name, and it's really not a name that I ever wanted to see in the same sentence as my own name, but oh, well, right?  Trying not to dwell on the coincidence (and, by "coincidence," I mean "likely not at all a coincidence") that I never had these problems until the Diaspora and Reverse Diaspora.  Grr.  Anyway, my new friend Migraine REALLY does not like wedding photographers (specifically, their flash bulbs) or wedding receptions with really great jazz bands that segue into really loud funk music around 11 pm.  So I slept a lot after we got home.  And then, after all of that sleeping, I was wide awake.  And so was the Big Kid, for non-migraine-related reasons.  And thus was created the McGlinchey Emerging Artists Program, which will consist primarily of Mom teaching a different art topic every day, for 26 days.  As it would be WAY TOO SIMPLE to pick topics at random (or select them simply because we liked them), it was decided that we would start with an A topic, and then move on to B and all of the way down to Z.  Meaning that:

(1) Mom had to think of art-related concepts starting with Q, X, Y and Z.  Believe it or not, Y was the toughest nut to crack.  Q turned out to be fairly easy, and also helped me around my other problem:

(2)  Mom had to limit herself to just one C, H, M and P.  (More on this later.)

I offered to give O to Big Kid, so that he could teach Origami.  Big Kid announced that he wanted to teach Optical Illusions for O, at which point Origami became J (Japanese Paper Folding), and then Big Kid decided that he, too, wanted to take the alphabet challenge, so now it appears that Japanese Paper Folding will consist of something other than Origami (Kirigami?), and a different paper fold will be taught every day for 26 days.  Meaning that the McGlinchey Emerging Artists Program doubled its course offerings within a half hour of its founding.  Beat THAT, other purveyors of higher ed!  Interestingly enough, Y was also the most difficult Origami letter.  We ended up searching online for animals that began with Y and worked back from there.  (In case you are wondering, we settled on "Yellowjacket" - because C already knew how to make an Origami bee.)

So here's my list, annotated in places:

Arcimboldo (Giuseppe) (we're gonna make faces out of fruits and vegetables, peeps)
Bosch (Hieronymus)
Frottage (pencil rubbings)
Gorky (Arshile)
Hockney (David) (we're gonna draw swimming pools, because the McGlincheys are a pool-loving people)
Illuminated Text
Japanese Paper Folding
Klee (Paul) (I'm cheating and bringing in Kandinsky and the rest of the Blaue Reiter movement)
Le Sidaner (Henri)
Matisse (Henri)
Negative Space
Optical Illusions
Pollock (Jackson)
Rousseau (Henri)
Stained Glass
Talavera Pottery
Window (Paris Through The, by Marc Chagall)
Xenophantos (Greek vase painter who expanded on the Attic Red technique in really cool ways)
Yellow (Van Gogh’s Sunflowers)
Ziggurat (yeah, I think Play-Doh models may be involved, or maybe perspective drawings)

So here's how Q helped:  I really wanted to feature Picasso and Pollock, but I had to choose one, so I moved Picasso up to C (Cubism), which means that Chagall had to go somewhere else.  Aha:  "Paris Through the Window," but instead of Paris, we could use images of Fort Worth!  Except, refer back to my original P problem.  So "Paris Through the Window" became "Window, Paris Through The," which left me without a place for Warhol.  And then it hit me:  Quadtych.  You know, like the four-tiled Marilyn Monroe images?  We'll draw the same image four times, and color it based on four different color theories (primary, secondary, complimentary, warm, cool, whatever).  

H was my other bottleneck:  Hockney, Hokusai, Hundertwasser.  But Momma's nothing if not clever:  Hundertwasserhaus is in Vienna, so V it is, and while we're at it we'll talk about the Viennese Secession Movement.  (No, it's not a political thing - it's an art thing, and there's an actual monument to it, called the Secession Building, in Vienna, which is, to me, the second coolest architectural thing in the city, Hundertwasserhaus being the first.  Both buildings are also notable for being the only structures in the city (okay, I'm exaggerating, but not much) that AREN'T painted Maria Theresa ochre, the ubiquitous yellow color that the Hapsburgs THREW UP ALL OVER THE AUSTRO-HUNGARIAN EMPIRE.  Hey, I should add that to the "Yellow" curriculum.  Think I just did.)  Where was I before I went off on a complete tangent? Oh, H.  Hokusai's "Great Wave" - an excellent example of Ukiyo-e woodblock art.  U:  DONE, AND DONE.

I will post images of our work product on this blog - IF I CAN FIND THE D***ED AV CABLE.

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