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Imagination Festival

Presented by:
HeathSouth Corporation
Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency
Alabama Baby & Child Magazine


Total art immersion awaits children and their families at Imagination Festival, where interactive workshops in art, music, theatre, dance and movement will unlock the creativity of every child.

To become a Classroom Sponsor and host one of the 60 city and county 4th grade classes attending Imagination Festival on Friday, April 24, please click here.




The Inner Experience: An Intuitive Process Painting Event
Led by Kim McKenzie

Come and join us as we create a large mural that conveys our inner experience. What would feelings and experiences such as Joy, Happiness, Hope, Sadness, or Fear look like visually? Maybe you really feel like a lion or a dragon on the inside, paint that. An outline of your figure will be traced onto the mural and you then fill it up with rich, bold, wild color. There will also be several prominent Birmingham area artists stopping by to paint their own inner experience as well, make sure you stop by to see that!

Amoeba Collaboration
Led by Becca Munkachy

In this project, the students will learn about amoeba cells and the concept of an artistic collaboration. Each student will create and decorate their own three-dimensional representation of a cell. Throughout the day, each individual cell will be combined together, forming one big amoeba- or a simple organism that consists of single cells that do not have a definite shape. The students will also learn about how artists use collaboration to combine their work with other artists’ work to create a more interesting piece overall.

Collaborative Story Quilt
Led by Hannah Adamson

Michael Cummings is an artist and quilter based in Harlem, New York. His quilts are narrative and focus more on story-telling than traditional quilting patterns. His quilts include scenes of Africa combined with historical themes. At our quilting booth, each child will create his or her own narratives on quilting squares. Each child’s square will be added to make a collaborative Imagination Festival story quilt. By combining Michael Cummings’ narrative style and a traditional quilting pattern, the children will be able to work together to create a piece that everyone can stop by to enjoy.

Creatureterranean: Clay Sculpture
Led by Jess Marie Walker

Clay is an exciting medium for realizing your in-depth visual imagination in 3D. The participants of this workshop will explore imaginative creatures and their environments by creating individual and collaborative sculptures. They will learn about clay and ceramics along with basic additive and subtractive hand-building techniques such as slab construction, pinch pottery, and surface manipulation.

Kinetic Mobiles
Led by Carolyn Fain

Kinetic Art is art that moves or is perceived as moving. Alexander Calder was an American Sculptor who is known for his colorful kinetic mobiles. Participants will be given an opportunity to make their own mobiles with construction paper and wire coat hangers. Students will loop one coat hanger through the other to make an “X” shape. They will then cut shapes from construction paper and attach them to one another with string and then tie the to the coat hangers.”

Expressionist Scribbles!
Led by Hannah Hawk

Expressionism is a movement in art history where artists were looking for emotional experiences rather than reality in their artwork. Wassily Kandinsky was a German Expressionist who used lines, colors, and shapes in his work, which often related to music. We will look at some of Kandinsky’s work and create our own Expressionist drawings. We will listen to different music and let the music move our hands creating various lines across the page. We will look at how different music effects our mark making and then see what we can find within our drawings! In the end we will have intricate, colorful Expressionist artworks!

Britto Inspired Sculpture
Led by Zach Gallman

Romero Britto- October 6, 1963 is a Brazilian Neo-popartist, painter, serigrapher, and sculptor. He combines elements of cubism, pop art and graffiti painting in his work. Britto expressed himself through various mediums including, watercolor, pen and ink, serigraphy, lithography, acrylic, and even finger paint. The presence of his culture and its influence on his work gave inspiration for a project that would naturally bring upon our own. Through the tape resist method the young artists will be able to capture the essence of their own cultures and create one cohesive piece on plywood structures.

Led by Maddy Coley

This project will challenge the kids to create meaning from their favorite words; connecting something they know (language) to more abstract concepts (art). In the Dadaist fashion, we will connect the words in a seemingly random way while allowing the kids to create their own meaning.

Japanese Paper Fish
Led by Alley Bulka

The kids will make Japanese inspired paper fish kites. They will use different kinds of paper and foil to decorate their fish. Then we will attach long streamers on their tails so that they will trail off to look like waves as the kids run with their kites!

Making Your Own Poster in the style of Peter Max
Led by Bob Carr

In this workshop we will learn about the psychedelic art style of artist Peter Max. We will be inspired by Peter Max’s works from the sixties, seventies and eighties. We will use markers and pencils to create our own groovy poster design.

Columbian Creatures Crafts
Led by Deborah Mauldin

Kids, don’t forget to stop by COLUMBIAN CREATURES CRAFTS to fashion wearable art for the Imagination Festival parade! Participants can make head-dresses using fiber, feathers and cloth, through learning a variety of craft methods such as wrapping and stitching techniques! Designs for the wearable creations can be resident of each participant’s imagination, but they will also learn that the creatures of Colombia offer a wide variety of educational thematic material such as: pink dolphins, spotted jaguars, colorful and exotic birds, curious monkeys, mysterious bats, lizards, snakes and turtles. Participants will learn about the Colombian creatures, and can then draw a design for a headdress or tunic that they can wear and keep!

Spring in with Van Gogh
Led by Jennifer Winholtz

Just like Vincent Van Gogh, students will use bright colors and short strokes to create Van Gogh inspired flower images. Students will get to know Van Gogh and use oil pastels and learn how to simulate the look of a Van Gogh paintings for a fun Springtime art work.

De Stijl
Led by Catherine DeWitt

For this project we will be using painter’s tape to create perpendicular lines on our paper. Then we will learn about and use the primary colors to create rectangles of color influenced by the De Stijl movement. When the paint is dry we will then peel back the tape to finish the piece!

Follow the Movement
Led by Sycamore Toffel

We will move our bodies with soul, creative thinking, and music!

Joy Notes
Led by Willow Scott

Share JOY is an letter writing experience spawned from Magic City Joy Notes. During the workshop, participants will create notes and envelopes of inspiration and hope to attach to a free standing sculpture inspired by artist Ed Fella in the park. The sculpture will invite people passing by to take a note or make a new note. Spread love through the written word…

Led by Cherish Roodhouse

Centuries ago the Japanese art form Suminagashi, which translates into “spilled ink” was formed. The art of marbling on paper inspired by Suminagashi is still used today by modern artists such as Heidi Finley. Students will be able to create their own marbled creation on paper using paint, water, and various tools of manipulation.

The Size of the Installation
Led by Kara Hall

Students will learn how to make an installation by using a small box or other object and creating a scene inside using various found objects. Students will discuss the concept of size by comparing different objects to their box and how the sizes change how everything is seen.

Flower-dyed Headbands
Led by Alabama Waldorf School

Alabama’s only Waldorf school will host a flower-pounding workshop at Magic City Art Connection’s Imagination Festival. This popular activity is one that comes straight from AWS’s Kindergarten program. Children use rubber mallets to pound the colors drawn from flower petals and even vegetables into strips of muslin. The result is colorful headbands dyed with the help of a little muscle and goods from the garden. Children delight, not only in the pleasure of pounding unpopular veggies like spinach and beets, but in watching the plain cloth bands turn into a kaleidoscope of greens, reds, purples, and yellows. The workshop is a good example of how Waldorf education embraces experiential, hands-on learning to teach both the arts and sciences.

Stick City
Led by Allison Allsopp

At this workshop we will explore using nature as art. By using what is already found in nature, we will learn about the concepts of recycling and upcycling to make art. We will also practice thinking outside the box for materials to create art.

Block Headz
Led by Jillian Woodruff

People commonly see faces in objects where there are indeed none, for example, the man in the moon. This psychological phenomenon is called Pareidolia and various artists throughout the centuries have played upon human’s tendencies to interpret faces in their works. Some have used objects to simply suggest fleeting faces and others use objects arranged together in such a way as to purposely produce a face. One artist well known for using the latter technique was Giuseppe Arcimboldo. He used fruits and vegetables and other inanimate objects such as books to create intricate portraits.

Keeping these concepts in mind students will assemble their own Arcimboldo-esque blockheads, using some aspect of the wood itself (i.e. wood grain or knots) to suggest eyes, nose, or mouth and will use other 3-D objects to recreate the rest of the face and/or body.

Led by Andrea Dillingham

We will be making group collages inspired by artists such as Henri Matisse and Henry Darger. We will explore two dimensional compositions while learning about collaborating with other artists.

Yarn Life
Led by Dave Presley

“People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they’re not on your road doesn’t mean they’ve gotten lost.” – Dalai Lama XIV

We will use this quote as our inspiration for this workshop. Each child will get a length of yarn and wind it into a path to show their own path. As the day continues the paths will multiply and cover over one another to weave a structure made up of each child’s different life path.

Color Explosion
Led by Carrie Montgomery

In this workshop we will be drawing our inspiration from nature and its Spring flowers. We will be making tissue paper flowers of all types and colors. We will learn about color theory and put our eyes to the test by using contrasting and complementary colors to make our paper flowers pop!

Murals inspired by Diego Rivera
Led by the Young Rembrandts

We will create a colorful and stylized drawing of a dragon and frog influenced by the artwork of Diego Rivera, who is considered one of Mexico’s greatest artists. Rivera’s fresco creations and art style have influenced many generations. His home, La Casa de los Vientos, featured five murals – one of which resembles our own vibrant masterpiece. We will focus on pattern, composition, stylized design and color application techniques.

Towers of Color
EyeBeam Project – An Art & Architecture Collaboration 

Led by:
Jonathan Meadows, Williams Blackstock Architects
Jeremy Cutts, Williams Blackstock Architects
Deborah West, Goodwyn Mills, and Cawood
Astyn Richard, Regions Bank
Kyle McCormick, Jefferson State Community College, Student

To get more details about the 2014 Eyebeam Project installation, click here.