SchoolArts Magazine

JAN 2019

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Page 38 of 50

S S M I D D L E S C H O O L M any of my seventh-grade students have never worked in clay, so where do I start with them? They were not ready for the demands of this mate - rial and needed to learn the processes a nd procedures of working with the medium. We started with pinch pots, followed by a series of relief tile proj - ects where students worked fairly flat b efore moving into more sculptural forms. Getting to know the clay first and learning what it can and cannot do is important. What's a Tessellation? One of our relief projects was to make a clay tessellation. A tessel- lation is a pattern using congruent s hapes—shapes that are exactly the same in size and outline. The sim- plest tessellations are made from ge ometric shapes such as a square or triangle. More interesting tessella- tions are made by making a template o f a more complex tessellating shape and sliding, rotating, or reversing it in a regular pattern. S tudents began by researching tessellations and then drew a tessel- lating design on 9 x 9" (23 x 23 cm) paper. The designs could be nonob- TE S S ELLATION TILES Annemarie Baldauf Getting to know the cla irst and learning what it can and cannot do is important Relief: a sculptural technique where the sculpted elements remain attached to a solid background of the same material. To create a sculpture in relief is to give the impression that the sculpted material has been raised above the background. Engraving: the art of forming designs b utting into the cla urface. Materials • plastic tessellation rulers • drawing paper and pencils • • glazes • wooden board for building • containers of slip • • rolling pin and sticks or slab rollers Left: A glazed and bisque-fired tessellation. Right: A student carves the background of her tessellation to create a relief. CONTINUED ON PAGE 37. 34 JANUAR Y 2019 SchoolArts

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