Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Mola Art

Third graders recently completed a lesson exploring Molas, a textile art made by the Kuna Indians of Panama.

Before beginning our Mola project, we did a quick weaving lesson - thinking about things weavings might be used for, including baskets, rugs, and fabric.  Students created woven patterns using colored strips of paper, and could add additional patterns with sharpie when finished.

Proud weavers from Ms. Park's class

During our next class, students were introduced to Mola art.  We looked at where Panama is located on the map and learned that the Kuna Indians live on the San Blas Islands, found along Panama's coast. 

We viewed many examples of Molas, while learning some important details along the way.  Molas are fabric panels handmade by Kuna women, who earn money and respect for their families through their craft.  Molas are made using a technique called reverse applique, involving many layers of fabric being cut and sewn together. They are traditionally worn on the blouses of women.  When creating Molas, artists are inspired by everyday life, nature, legends, and even dreams.  

Students spent a few weeks creating Mola collages.  Each student began by drawing an animal using simple shapes.   Remembering that Molas typically feature bright colors and patterns, students colored in their animals keeping this in mind.  We then cut out and glued our animals to black paper.  Students finished their artwork by measuring, cutting, and gluing strips of colored paper to create a unique background design.

Borja (Ms. Munger)

Eden (Ms. Munger)

Tage (Ms. Munger)

Carmen (Ms. Park)

Kylie (Ms. Park)

Mazen (Ms. Park)

Johanna (Ms. Park)

Allison (Ms. Dileso)

Hugo (Ms. Dileso)

Sebastian (Ms. Dileso)

Joshua (Ms. Dileso)

Gracie (Ms. Dileso)

Toba (Ms. Dileso)

Mola Art on display at the WPS Art Show

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