Friday, September 7, 2012

"Gates of Paradise"

Lorenzo Ghiberti, an artist from Florence, Italy, created the "Gates of Paradise", which are a set of ten panels making up gilded bronze doors. They depict scenes from the New Testament in the Bible. This is an interesting lesson to learn about as well as to create! Students love aluminum foil reliefs, I am assuming, because it is different and it looks like "something" instead of a piece of paper. They are curious as to how to get it to look like the example.

We started off with drawings of fish (or any subject matter) and the underwater backgrounds. They cut the poster board and then glue and layer it so that it is very three dimensional and has texture. The students rub a bit of Elmer's glue on the surface of the relief sculpture. They place the sculpture side down on a piece of aluminum foil. We flip it over and rub with our thumbs and hands so that all of the aluminum foil is pressed against the poster board shapes. We then fold the back over like we're wrapping a present to make it have a neater appearance. When they are dry, you can take India ink and rub it all over to go in the creases. I have also used ball point pens in the past to add great texture. The ink gets down in the lines and looks wonderful.

This is another example of when the students wrote their names and cut them out of posterboard, layered it with other pieces and shapes, added texture with a ball point pen, and added ink (applied with a paint brush and rubbed on with a paper towel). 

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