Piet Mondrian Abstract Art for Kids

This Piet Mondrian abstract art for kids is an easy art project and lesson suitable for many ages.

Piet Mondrian was a talented and versatile artist best known for his clean, geometric pieces like Trafalgar Square and Broadway Boogie Woogie. Introducing your art to children is fun because the style you have adopted throughout your life is so different from so many other artists and fun to create and observe.

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If you are teaching this art lesson to your children or a group of children, it is good to tell them a little story about Mondrian himself and I will give you a short story to make it easier for you so that here you have everything You need in one place. You can decide to add something else if you like. Then all you need is the materials and you have an art lesson planned.

Start the art lesson with information about Piet Mondrian

Piet Mondrian was born in 1872 and died in 1944. He was Dutch and was born into an aristocratic family that eventually escaped World War II and moved to New York around 1940.
Mondrian was still studying art in Amsterdam. His early works were more like his typical paintings of the time and in the Impressionist style, like Monet.

He showed talent early on, but at that point he had yet to show his evolved style for which he became famous.

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cubic

Cubism also had a major influence on him, after seeing an exhibition with Braque and Picasso around 1910 he moved to Paris in 1912 to work more on his style of painting and focused on making the color of his outdoor paintings so pure close. as possible.

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He wanted simple purity to emerge, and that’s when he began going from trying to do what other painters were doing to doing his own thing.

After moving to New York, he developed a love for the big city, the skyscrapers and the rhythm there. He produced many plays and was very prolific. He had given his work his own term ‘Neoplasticism’ and in his last years his paintings used mainly primary colors and black and white, reflecting the streets and patterns of the city.

Many people refer to Mondrian as the original abstract artist.

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To create a Mondrian piece you will need for each student:

  • small canvas or canvas ranging in size from 8″ x 8″ to 11″ x 14″
  • black masking tape (I’ve used both the thin and thick styles and prefer the thin one, but both work well).
  • Acrylic paints in primary colors, as well as any you wish to allow in addition to these
  • Pencil, ruler and eraser
  • 1″ brushes and also a fine brush
  • Pallet or paper plates, water cups and paper napkins
  • Disposable tablecloth

Step-by-step guide to Piet Mondrian’s abstract art for kids

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art lesson

tips

Explain that the children will use light pencils to draw a series of squares and rectangles on the canvas. If they go overboard, that means a lot more painting time.

Many get caught up in the fun creative process of using the ruler. They don’t think about the time factor and the fact that they still have to paint everything.

For my teaching we have divided this lesson into two parts. This way the paint had time to dry well before the tape was applied. This part depends on how much time you have to work. The sticky part doesn’t take too long, but it doesn’t stick when the paint is wet.

Use the ruler to make the squares (or freehand with older kids)

Ask them to use the ruler to create the squares. Ask them to leave at least one or two larger than the others. This helps break up the design and keeps it from looking more like a checkerboard.

Before they start painting, ask them to hold up the canvas and look at it to make sure they like the design they have chosen.

livery

Let them choose about 3 colors. An odd number looks better and many will stick to the primary colors, but some will want to use more. Too many colors distract from the Mondrian feeling.

Ask them to paint the big main squares first and choose the color they want as the main color. If you start with smaller squares, it’s harder to find focus. In the end, they might not like the result.

I reminded them to paint them all the same color first, picking 3-5 squares of each color. For example, if red was the chosen focus color, they would paint the biggest red and then randomly select a few others to also paint red before moving on to the next color.

You can use the small brush to paint the outline of the square first to make it easier for the lines to stay in the areas, and then switch to the larger brush to fill it.

At this point, all they have to do is select and fill in the squares to paint.

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One important thing to know before going too far is to leave spaces in between. It doesn’t have to be a lot, but the white is what really stands out and reflects Mondrian’s style.

Another important thing is to make sure you apply a second coat over your paint colors. He emphasized the importance of solid, pure pigments in his paintings, and if you apply just one coat in most of these colors, they become transparent and look washed out and unfinished.

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I advise them to let the color soak in well and be almost dry before you start applying another coat so you know where you really need it.

Let the paint dry

Once the paint is well covered and firm, it should be allowed to dry.

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add black tape

The last step is to add the black band in the middle. It works so much better than trying to paint lines or draw what looks messy.

The tape gives the room a clean, finished look and ties everything together nicely.

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If you are teaching more than one child, have them share the rolls of tape and take turns passing them around. If you have them cut long pieces of tape and then try to cut and match them you’ve wasted a lot of tape and in one class I taught several kids lost their tape and a few ran away because of it.

It seems quicker to leave her alone, but it’s not worth it. I asked her to put a piece of tape on the canvas where I wanted it and then cut it off. I then passed the tape to the next person and then straightened it out while they waited for the tape to come back to them.

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Making sure the canvases are standard style and not planks, stretch the tape around the outside edges as well, then fold it around the back.

It makes a big difference in the finished product.

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It’s fun to put together and take pictures of when they’re done. Each person’s creation will be so different and yet also related.

This is a good example of how everyone has their own creative and fun approach.

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