Collaborative Art… The Grid Assignment, 2020

Walking around the hallways at ASH, there are so many displays of talented and thoughtful student work. Now more than ever, we want to share examples of these and highlight the incredible work our students and teachers are doing. This week, our high school Art Teacher Ms. Kular was kind enough to share the details behind what her Art I and Art II artists have been hard at work on.

“For the past several years, I have chosen to start the school year with this drawing and shading exercise. It gives me the opportunity to see the variety of approach, experience, and technical diversity within the high school Art classes. This year, the Art I and Art II students, 54 of them, took on the challenge and responded with the beautiful collaborative effort you see here.

The idea for this year’s 64 piece grid originated with the work of Golden Age Dutch Master Willem Heda. His piece, Still Life with a Gilt Cup, was completed in 1635. It’s one of the pieces I like to re-visit when I’m visiting the Rijksmuseum. I am intrigued by still life drawing and painting and decided to make a larger than life Heda’s work through the hands of my talented students.

I changed over into black and white, the color photo I had taken at the museum. From here, I zoomed in on a section I thought would be interesting in terms of the qualities of light and dark, and the interaction of various textures, obvious in the piece. I printed out the photo, then measured out an 8x8 grid in 2.5 cm squares, and cut these into squares. Next came the larger pieces of paper, each 20x20 cm. 

Students in Art I and Art II were asked to choose a section that was challenging and would further their practice with smooth shading techniques. On average, each piece took at least an hour - the pieces with more difficult twists and turns took up to two classes to complete. In the end, the entire work required about 100 hours of effort! I think they’ve done a fine job working as a collaborative group of artists, honoring and showcasing the work of Heda.”