Mar 27, 2021 - Mar 28, 2021
Workshop Fee: $325
Class Size: 12 (max)
NOTE: This class will be held in a live, online format using the Zoom Platform.
Class meets Sat/Sun 10am-5pm ET with Lunch break
Imagine your artwork flying in the sky. This two-day intensive workshop is co-taught by artists Melanie and George who will provide simple tools to begin the exploration of art that flies. Along with basic processes, we will look at the rich international history and world culture of kites along with contemporary art practices.
The course will include the some simple principles and the aerodynamics of tethered flight and include both traditional kitemaking and a primer for more advanced principles using the basic materials of paper, glue, bamboo, and string. We will start with a series of simple paper fold kites using origami-like principles. We will then explore and make some traditional Japanese style kite forms. We also like to encourage experimentation and have students jump to creating their own flying forms along with their chosen imagery of photography, painting, printmaking or collaged paper works.
The lightness of the medium of air inspires the flight-worthiness of the form. We strongly encourage the simplicity factor in the making of kites and following the play of the hands. The kites we make during this first introduction will hopefully inspire further explorations into the craft and art of kites.
A word of warning: Kitemaking and flying your creations may catch your imaginations in a higher way and, like us, you will become uncontrollably and passionately involved with kites as wind artists and devoted sky watchers. There is nothing quite like seeing your freshly made kite climb to the blue sky and dance happily overhead at the end of the string. The kite smile is contagious, too.
Class meets Sat & Sun 10:00am-1:00pm and 2:00pm-5:00pm ET
Small kits of materials and tools will be provided for $20 – The fee is included in the tuition for materials and postage. Note: Students outside the US postal range, might incur an additional cost. Maine Media will advise accordingly.
Images courtesy of George Peters & Melanie Walker
Instructor: Melanie Walker
“I remember making and flying kites with my father when I was quite young. He was a flight training pilot during WWII and enjoyed making box kites from paper and dowels. My interest in kites as an art form developed more fully after collaborating with George Peters on installations and kite making ventures starting back in the mid-nineties. I now combine photographic imagery with kites to extend the range of photography into works for the gallery of the sky.”
Melanie Walker has an exhibition history that spans more than thirty years. She received a BA from San Francisco State University and an MFA from Florida State University. She is a mixed media artist invested in ideas. Her approach to materials includes photographic media, digital art, sculpture, installation, fiber art, printmaking, costume design and public art. She has exhibited her work both nationally and internationally and has work in a number of permanent collections including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson. She has received numerous grants and fellowships including a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. She is presently a professor of Art in the Integrated Media Area where she teaches analog, digital and historical photographic processes at the University of Colorado, Boulder.
Instructor: George Peters
“I began making kites with my father when I was a boy and returned to making kites again while living in Hawaii in 1976. After years as a painter, sculptor and graphic artist, the experimental combination of working in light weight sculptural forms, being an avid sailor and having a constant source of good trade winds probably made the leap to art kites inevitable. Much of my initial inspiration came from Japanese kites that turned simple kite making into a full wind-blown passion. Bamboo, paper, and plastic kites gradually transformed into kites sewn from rip-stop nylon and fiberglass rod and tube frames. Many designs were inspired from nature, the forms of birds and insects to more abstracted shapes suited for their aerodynamic qualities and visual appeal in the overhead sky gallery.”
George Peters has worked with aerial forms from gallery works to installation sculpture, kites, mobiles, wind sculpture and banner works. He has completed over a hundred national and international commissioned works for private, corporate, and public institutions. His art education was at the Art Center School of Design in Los Angeles and has worked in various art fields as a visual artist, sculptor, craftsman, fiber artist, environmental and installation sculpture, graphic arts, illustration, photography, film animation, digital imaging, architectural modeling, theater set and costume design. Since creating Airworks Studio, Inc. with artist, Melanie Walker in 1999, their joint works have won national and international public art commission awards.