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Global display creates 'quite a stir of emotions' with study of Swiss sculpture artist

An art display from Mr. Roncone’s class is creating a stir in the media center, a stir of emotions and gestures that is!  Art 1 students began this project with learning human proportions and applying it to a series of 20 different gesture drawings during class. A gesture drawing is a quick sketch of a human form usually completed in a matter of a few minutes. Afterward, the students researched the work of Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966), a Swiss sculptor, painter, draftsman and print maker. Giacometti worked over his gesture drawings during multiple sittings, and found that when he stepped back, the prominent aspect in the gesture drawing was the skeletal form.  After he made this realization, his sculptures began to also represent skeletal forms.  Students were then assigned to recreate these sculptures.  


They used armature wire to create an attenuated human form based on the sculptural work of Giacometti. Then the wire armature was wrapped tightly with newspaper to give some dimensions to the wire. Afterward, plaster cloth was wrapped around the form. Finally, the sculpture was painted with black acrylic paint and then "dry rubbed" with gold to create a faux metallic finish - similar to an aged bronze patina. Students based their sculptures' poses from their gesture drawing activity to illustrate an emotive effect and the expression of movement.


The final products now adorn the book cases of our media center, a welcome addition.  Artist statements from students are included below.


“I think that the sculptures were amazing to create because you took, a drawing that you created, then we took them one step farther.  It was really cool to see the step by step process of creating gestures. “

Grace Wagner, 9th grade Art 1


“Working on the Giacometti sculptures was fun and a good learning experience. We learned how to work with different mediums like the plaster and newspaper while making the sculptures. Giacometti was a great artist to base our artwork off of and provided a lot of influence to us while still allowing us to make it our own.”

Arin Perkins, 10th grade Art 1


“The initial goal of this project was to emulate the physique of Alberto Giacometti’s sculptures. Giacometti was a Swiss artist whose sculptures were made to represent the skeletal form of the human body. Through this project we have attempted to create sculptures with similar characteristics to those of Giacometti's, and I hope we have done so successfully. “

Shaylee Cooney, 10th grade, Art 1


"The Giacometti sculptures were fun pieces to work on because they helped us apply our knowledge of anatomical structures we studied in class. We were able to get a better sense of the human form through our quick charcoal and chalk pastel gesture drawings we did before we started our sculptures." 

Kayla Marr, 9th grade, Art 1 


Written by: Chris Roncone, Teacher and Lisa Justice - Assistant Principal
Posted: Apr 20, 2015 by Lisa Justice

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