>From: "Susan Holland" <Susan_Holland@teachnet.edb.utexas.edu>
> My other question is what is the deal with gesso? why did it turn that thing
> rubbery? Glue is a supply I have in abundance-> about a five year supply at
the moment plus big refill jugs. I know that stuff> gets stringy if it gets
old and some of it is already turning yellow.
My thoughts would be along the line of yours...it's too old. Smell would be
a good indicator. Judy Nagel...do you have a clue about this? Is there
something you can add to the mixture to make it usable?
My personal take on this would be to toss it...even if you have lots of it.
If I think the product has changed in structure then the chemical
composition has probably changed also and it might possibly become more
toxic for children to use. I might be incorrect with the product's stability
in my thinking but then...I don't like taking chances with their health or
> About saving time- I don't want to do that. I have kids who would finish this
> project in one class period if I gave them all the supplies (skipping the
> glue). Two minutes to bend the wire, 5 minutes to fiddle with the hose, 15
> minutes to slap on the paint, and I would be hearing "I'm done!" I want some
> time invested in the project, and the glue step is important for that reason.
> Taking a couple of class days to glue this thing won't turn it into drudgery.
> I want kids to experience working long and hard on art and getting
>satisfaction\> out of it.
Gotcha! My kids tend to do the same thing...finish the building of it
lickity split. After the initial slapping of paint on it, they then progress
to the stage of dripping paint on it ala Pollack (which seems to always be
the norm), then they finally begin the stage of looking at the form of the
sculpture and painting it with that in mind. All this tends to build up some
paint layers as well as taking time. Our painting stages go for two weeks or
more. This turns the project into a long one and surprisingly not boring.
> Also, I do want the sculptures to be as solid as possible. I read someone
> else's post about kids poking things through the models/ examples that a
> teacher had made. My kids are 5th graders, and most have plenty of curious
> siblings. When these things go home, I want them to be able to withstand some
> abuse. I know they need to because the first question out of my kid's mouths
> is always: do we get to keep it? So I don't want to send something home that
> looks cool, but breaks immediately.
In that vein, what do you do with their paintings, collages, paper mache,
paper sculptures, plaster carving, or clay? You can't stop destruction if
that is their desire. That goes for adults too...re. NYC.
I know that's not the answer you are looking for, but putting on a base coat
of gesso, or decoupage, or plaster coating, or plaster gauze or latex paint
will not make it that much more indestructible if they want to destroy it.
I've tried them all and I'm handing you MY experiences.