The atelier had to be a place for researching motivations and theories of children from scribbles on up, a place for exploring variations in tools, techniques, and materials with which to work…a place for becoming familiar with similarities and differences of verbal and non-verbal languages. ~ Loris Malaguzzi
For my first post back I thought I’d give you a little peek inside our art cupboard. Our art area, our atelier, has changed a lot over the last couple of years. It has gone from a dedicated space to this small narrow cupboard under our breakfast bar.
I think the reason why I really wanted to show you this space was because I wanted to show you that it is possible to have a place for art, a place for authentic art materials, in a tiny space.
I think I also wanted to show you that, as beautiful and invoking as the ateliers are in Reggio Emilia or even those in early childhood settings, you don’t need to have every thickness of paper or every imaginable colour of paint to create a space where children can explore their passions and creativity.
I’ve purchased our art materials over time as Jack and Sarah grew and became more familiar with and confident in their skills. Here’s what we have in our art cupboard:
Top shelf (left to right) (and links to some activities)
- wooden alphabet stamps (Kikki K)
- wooden number stamps (Typo)
- ink pads (Aldi)
- pipettes (Zart Art)
- lino block printing tools (Thrift store)
- cut craft wire and kebab skewers (wire from Spotlight)
- coloured wire (Zart Art)
- twine (supermarket)
- low temperature glue gun (Spotlight)
- watercolour pencils (JasArt)
- chalk pastels (Reeves)
- charcoal (Spotlight)
- oil paints (Art supply store)
- glitter (my nemesis – safely secured in the plastic container – from Spotlight)
- recycled clay (Potters’ Society)
- air dry clay (Top Bargain)
- clay sculpting tools (sorry I can’t recall where I bought these)
- cash register paper (office supply store)
- glue, scissors, hole punches and double-sided tape
- Crayola sidewalk chalk
- coloured Sharpies (Big W)
- Stockmar wax block crayons
- wallpaper adhesive powder (available from hardware stores)
- coloured sand (Top Bargain)
- oil pastels (Micador – from Officeworks)
- block watercolours (Micador – from Officeworks)
- watercolour tubes (Micador – from Officeworks)
And this is a little shelf we have outside. It has paints, brushes and claggy glue as well as paint containers. Underneath this shelf there is a bucket of sidewalk chalk, a clear container and some big brushes for water painting and some old towels for cleaning up.
So this is our art cupboard. It’s small but it is full with wonderful art materials. I’d love to hear about your art areas. Is there a small cupboard somewhere that you could turn into an art cupboard?