Jan 20, 2013

Ellsworth Kelly Inspired Abstraction

This year 6 class viewed a small collection of Ellsworth Kelly's paintings before creating their own abstract pieces. They penciled in their intended shapes and then painted with regular acrylic. Some children opted to mix their own colours while others were content to use the colours as they came from the bottle.

It's interesting that several of the students shapes remind me more of Matisse or Miro, although we did not look at either of their work. When repeating this lesson I think I'll ask the children to plan in their mind's eye and begin with the paintbrush directly, rather than the pencil. I think this would change the type of shapes and lines that result.

Following are 8 examples of Mr Kelly's art. I don't know about you, but I find most of these to be very serene and content.


  1. good inspiration!!! I would like to hear the comments of your students when you show them those works of art... They are used to know good contemporary artists through your lessons, they are very lucky!