Tag Archives: free

Elephant Project Progress

We had a lot of enthusiastic visitors collaborating on our two elephant sculptures this past weekend.  Take a look at the photos, below, to see the great progress we made together.  If you missed this past weekend, there is still a lot of work to do – please join us in the Learning Center at the Museum this Friday from 6-9pm or Saturday from 12-4 to learn how to work with papier-mâché and wood and to contribute your mark to this exciting community art project.  The workshop is free with museum admission.

Puppet Workshops!

One of the best parts of the holiday season here at the museum each year are all of our extra (free with museum admission!) drop-in puppet-making workshops!  Join us this year to make your own gingerbread puppet, sock puppet, stick puppet, marionette, and finger puppet.  If you visited our studio over the Thanksgiving weekend you already got a taste of puppet-making, but don’t worry if you missed us last weekend; there are a number of upcoming workshops scheduled for December.

Here is a list of our upcoming puppet workshops in December:

(Please see the Drop-In page of this blog for a full listing of these and all of our other workshops.)

Gingerbread Puppets – Saturday 12/15, 5-8:30 (in conjunction with Noel Night)

TBD Puppet Workshop – Saturday 12/26, 12-4

Sock Puppets – Sunday 12/27, 12-4

Bug Puppets – Monday 12/28, 12-4

Tongue Depressor Stick Puppets – Tuesday 12/29, 12-4

Felt Marionette Puppets – Wednesday 12/30, 12-4

Model Magic Finger Puppets – Thursday 12/31, 12-4

We hope to see you for one or all of these fun workshops!

Cylinder Seals Drop-In Workshop

FileCylinder seal Shamash Louvre AO9132

Our Sunday Drop-In Workshop for the month of September is called “Make Your Mark!  Personal Seals,” and gives visitors an opportunity to make a simple cylinder seal similar to those made in ancient times.  These seals were first created in the Near East and later were made in Mesopotamia and Egypt and were used to create multiple impressions of the same document.  Usually made of stone (often amethyst or lapis lazuli), the cylindrical seal would have images or symbols carved into it.  When the seal was rolled over wet clay, the indentiations created an impression in the clay; this process could be repeated countless time to make many copies of a document.  Because the seals were often made of beautiful stones, sometimes they would be included along with gold and jewels in graves of important people.

In our workshop visitors will be able to carve their own symbols, patterns or pictures into a wax cylinder and then roll their seal over wet clay to create an impression.   Visit us any Sunday in September in the Student Lunchroom from noon-4!

Cyanotypes

FileAnna Atkins algae cyanotype

In conjunction with the special exhibition: Photography, The First 1oo Years, on Saturdays in September, visitors to the museum will have the opportunity to participate in a (free!) drop-in workshop called Photograms: Cyanotype.

A photogram is a photographic  image made without a camera.  It is made by placing objects directly onto the surface of a photo-sensitive material such as photographic paper and then exposing it to light.  The areas of the paper that have received no light appear white, those exposed through transparent or semi-transparent objects appear in a medium tone, and areas that receive full light become dark.

Cyanotype is a blueprint process which provides permanent images in a beautiful range of cyan blue values.  The process is thought to have been discovered by John Herschel in 1842 and first used in a photographic way by Anna Atkins who is regarded as the first female photographer and who made the image above.

Visit us in the Student Lunchroom from 12-4pm on any Saturday in September and make your own!  If you find that you enjoy the process and results, there are many great resources for materials on the web.  One that we have used is http://www.blueprintsonfabric.com.  This store is an excellent resource for pre-treated cyanotype fabric and paper.

Second Saturdays on the Riverfront

Head down to Rivard Plaza on the river (1340 E. Atwater Street in Detroit; click here for a map) to visit us on the 2nd Saturday of each summer month through September.  The DIA has partnered with the Detroit RiverFront Conservancy and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra for this fabulous once-a-month event.  Click here for more information about the program from the Conservancy’s website. 

We’ll be there this Saturday (8/8) from 11am – 1pm with a free drop-in workshop for all ages.  We’ll provide all the materials you need to make your own kalimba instrument (a type of African thumb piano) to take home.  Come join us!

kalimbas

The DIA Evening Post

Throughout the recent Norman Rockwell exhibition at the museum, hundreds of our visitors created their own “DIA Evening Post” magazine cover  in our Drop-In Workshop.  You can still check out the spectacular results displayed on our Flickr page.  

photo montage_edited-1

Papel Picado Drop-In Workshop

Now that we are back home in the museum, our Friday evening workshops are being held in our new Studio.  On Fridays from 6-9pm throughout the month of May, visitors to the museum are invited to stop by and create Papel Picado.  Papel Picado – Spanish for cut or perforated paper – is used in Mexican and Mexican-American communities to create colorful banners, flags and table cloths for Day of the Dead altars or for decorating during festivals and special occasions. 

Originally made with handmade paper from the amate tree, contemporary papel picado is most often made using tissue paper, metallic paper, or plastic.  Artists study for many years to learn the techniques of making Papel Picado.  At one time, the designs were cut out of each piece of paper using scissors.  Today sharp chisels are used to cut through many layers of paper at once. 

Below is an image of a traditional Papel Picado.  In our workshop visitors can create their own unique Papel Picado to take home. 

Papel_picado_6[1]