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Bruno + Form Complementary Color Nature Monoprint

The following lesson is based on the "Bruno Andrade: The Spirituality of Nature" education unit.

In 1987, Andrade built a house in the Flour Bluff community located on the Encinal Peninsula. The “Bluff” is separated from the rest of Corpus Christi by Corpus Christi Bay, Oso Bay, and the Laguna Madre Lagoon.

The artist spent time drawing trees, plants, and flowers, as well as the surrounding waters, in preparation for his abstract paintings, including his series that featured Oso Bay. He frequently brought his art students to the Bluff to draw and paint from nature. During his time in Flour Bluff, Andrade polished his style, refined his color palette, and strengthened his loving relationship to nature -- the source of his spirituality and artistic inspiration.

His soulful art represented his nature-based vision of whimsical trees and fanciful flowers from his unique universe. Andrade remained in Flour Bluff until 2000, when he moved to the city.

"All I Need" Bruno Andrade

Form is a fundamental element in the creation of any and all art forms. To oversimplify, a form can be either three dimensional or flat. Regardless of what dimension spawns the form, it will be either geometric or organic. Typically man made creations tend to be geometric such as your desk, home, and wheel, while nature naturally creates organic forms which are free flowing. Brunos work explores and abstracts the inspiration he found in nature's forms and often connected the way nature creates forms and shapes to his own spirituality.

Let's Create!

Using nature as inspiration as Bruno did we will create a Complementary Color Nature Monoprint.

Monoprint:

The monoprint is a form of printmaking where the image can only be made once, unlike most printmaking which allows for multiple originals.

If you need a refresher on color schemes and examples of complimentary colors refer back to the lesson Bruno + Color

Materials:

  • Colored construction paper in six complementary colors (red + green, yellow + purple, blue + orange)
  • Acrylic / tempera paint or block printing ink in the SAME complementary (6) colors
  • Paint brush and water cup OR brayers for ink
  • Glue stick or tape

STEP 1

Take a walk with someone you trust or a guardian, if you can. Collect different looking leaves or rocks of various sizes. Try not to pick things that are still growing, but rather find some around you on a walk. Put them in a bag, and clean them when you get home.

STEP 2

If you start with regular 8.5” x 11” construction paper, fold it in half horizontally or hamburger style and cut. You will only need one half.

Fold that half in the middle horizontally or hamburger style but do not cut it.

Do this to all 6 sheets.

STEP 3

Use a healthy amount of green paint and make a rectangle the size of the first leaf you want to print.

Grab your leaf, and press it onto the painted rectangle.

STEP 4

Working quickly so your paint or ink doesn't dry, press your leaf against your first construction paper. Since I used green paint, I used its complement, red, for the paper.

Now using the same leaf or adding others, make a design or pattern.

Now you have your first monoprint!

STEP 5

Next, try same pattern, with the same/similar leaves but reverse the colors and use red paint on green construction paper.

STEP 6

Now, switch over to the blue and orange combo.

This time we used a twig and tried a different technique. Instead of pressing it, we brushed it around making expressionist marks.

Have fun with it! Try something new.

Lastly, arrange all of your monoprints however you like!

Glue or tape the halves so that each one is overlapping the next on the blank half.

Cut off the extra bit at the end.

You can fold it up like a Nature Book, separate them as individual prints or Nature Cards.

FINAL STEP

Send in pictures of your creative nature monoprints to education@mexic-artemuseum.org to be featured in an interactive portion of the exhibit!

This lesson was produced in conjunction with the exhibit, “Bruno Andrade Retrospective: a Native of South Texas” presented by the Mexic-Arte Museum in Austin, Texas. The text supplied is from the exhibit, by Dr. George Vargas, PhD Curator for Mexic-Arte Museum and a friend and cohort of Bruno Andrade. Email finished project pictures to education@mexic-artemuseum.org or Instagram DM to @mexic_artedu to be featured in an interactive component of the exhibit open to the public!