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Imagination Festival

Presented by:
Alabama State Council on the Arts
National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency
Alabama Power
BlueCross and BlueShield of Alabama
Babypalooza Magazine


Total art immersion awaits children and their families at Imagination Festival, where socially distanced, interactive workshops and projects will unlock the creativity of every child.

Friday, April 22, 2022 – Friday is reserved for visiting elementary students & school art trip.
Saturday, April 23, 2022, 10am-5pm
Sunday, April 24, 2022, 10am – 4pm


Jamison Brown
Takashi Murakami: Murakami’s Flower Dome

Japanese contemporary artist Takashi Murakami has established a body of work that shows an influence of Western culture on traditional Japanese artistry. In 2001, Murakami coined the term “Superflat” and began this artistic movement inspired by his signature aesthetic. His work incorporates bright colors and flat, 2-dimensional imagery, often using recurring motifs. One of his signature motifs is his iconic smiling flower. Murakami’s flowers have appeared in numerous works ranging from paintings and sculptures to toys and collectibles. In this workshop, participants will use brightly colored paper, felt, and markers to create their own flower in Murakami’s iconic style. Using wire, each flower will be attached to a large wire dome, creating one collaborative flower dome.

Jessica Channel
John Herschel: Sunbeams and Tidal Waves – Watercolor Cyanotypes

Cyanotypes are made through a light sensitive photographic process invented by scientist John Herschel in 1812. Before Xerox and inkjet printers, cyanotypes provided a wide range of uses, such as multiple quick copies, blueprints, note taking, and documenting plants. Contemporary artists, such as Leah Sobsey, Brian Taylor, Diana H. Bloomfield and  Paula Riff, are taking cyanotypes to new heights. For instance, cyanotypes are historically created by mixing ferric ammonium citrate and potassium ferricyanide. The mixture is then applied to a material, such as paper, and objects are laid on top. It’s placed in sunlight, allowing UV lights to create a print of what’s placed on top. Contemporary artists have added watercolors, anthotypes, and found objects to the process. Students will explore the process using different materials to create a composition

Rosa Delgado
Yoyoi Kusama: See My Whole Self – Portraits

We will go over elements of negative and positive space.

Students will use the 3ft by 5ft plastic vinyl as the canvas.

They will explore creating shapes with their bodies and tracing that on the paper. Either 1-3 silhouettes to each banner. They will design their own silhouette and include artistic elements to express their character, personality, and interests using paper, tissue paper, collage magazines, or paint. Then, we will hang them on the outside of the fence at the end to create an installation created by the students so everyone can enjoy it!

Alternatively we could cut out the shapes, depending on the time. I would like to spend the majority of the time designing the inside of the person so they can get to know each other and share about themselves.

Noah Duffy
David Edgar: Under the Sea – Upcycled Animal Sculptures

David Edgar is an artist living in Charlotte, North Carolina where he retired as a chair and professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. On one of his projects “Plastiquarium”, Recycled plastics art, he  highlights plastic waste by using it to create high quality folk art out of regularly recyclable plastics. He uses a heat gun to bind the plastics but claims it can be done with a regular hair dryer.

Aiming for the likes of an upcycling Artist like David Edgar, this workshop seeks to bring plastic art to the mainstream audience at a level safe for children. The workshop will consist of both deconstructing and synthesizing fond plastic bottles of various sizes and gluing them into sea critters. This workshop we wanted to focus particularly on sea animals who are probably the group changed most by plastic waste dumped into the ocean.

Elmore Carson
Matisse: Unleash the Wild Beasts! Exploring Fauvism and Paper Cutouts

During the early 1900s, French artist Henri Matisse (1869-1954) led a small group of painters in abandoning the realistic color and perspective of classical art for a more expressive and abstract style. Dubbed “les Fauves’ ‘ (French for “the wild beasts’ ‘), characteristics of the Fauvist movement include the vibrant and expressive use of color, distinctive contrasts, and flat composition of simplified forms. Later in his life, relegated to a wheelchair after developing stomach cancer, he took quickly to the medium of paper cutouts, which he referred to as “painting with scissors”. He again turned to dynamic colorations and abstract, expressive shapes in his work. In this workshop, inspired by the Matisse’s quote “I wouldn’t mind turning into a vermilion goldfish,” students will be challenged to consider what wild beast they might choose to be, and then create a personal collage including abstract cutouts of their beast and aspects of its ecosystem. Finally, they will arrange their individual works together with other student pieces to create temporary large-scale murals inspired by Matisse’s works, including Beasts of the Sea, Polynesia, The Sky, and The Sheaf.

Bailey Hite
Dadaism: Collage Creations

Teaching Artists will  briefly discuss Dadaism and its meanings to what art can be. Once that discussion is over, the children would take what they learned and use it to create their own Dada collages to challenge what they believe art can be.

Alexis McCrary
Andy Goldsworthy: Earthworks

Andy Goldsworthy is a British artist most notable for his desired medium: the earth itself. He creates art installations in urban and natural settings, using the organic elements that nature already provides — such as leaves, rocks, wood, sand, ice, water, and soil. In this workshop, reeeparticipants will work in groups to sketch their own idea for Earth Art, then work together to find the beauty in their surroundings and scavenge for natural materials (ex: leaves, small pebbles, flowers, etc.) to include in a collaborative piece that is inspired by Goldsworthy’s swirling, colorful works. They will explore the importance of pattern, line, and color in nature as well as art. 

Dewon Moton
Urban Mural Art 

Description coming soon.

Melissa Noble
Annabeth Rosen: The Made up Thing – Clay Sculpture
Annabeth Rosen is a contemporary ceramic sculptor whose body of work demonstrates what it means to test the boundaries of what clay can do and what sculpture can be. Her unconventional work often includes pieces of broken ceramic, clay and glaze that have been fired many times over, and are often held together by elastic bands or steel wire. Her quote from Sculpture magazine “I think a lot about the made-up thing” is the inspiration behind this workshop. Participants will work together to create individual clay elements that will be combined to make their very own “Made-up Thing.”

Tania Russell
Ntozake Shang: Be Gentle with Yourself – ChoreoPoetry

Ntozake Shange created, choreopoetry, a new form of theatrical expression through the combination of poetry, music, and dance. Shange coined the term choreopoetry in 1975 to describe how the combination of verbal and nonverbal communication revolutionized poetry. This workshop will explore choreopoetry much like Ntozake Shange did with the use of self-love poetry, movement, and music. In this workshop, students will write poetry, learn different movements, and work in teams to create a group choreopoem on the topic of self-love that will be performed in front of each other at the end of the session.

Shaheed Taweed
HipHop Movement: Knowledge, Rhythm & Understanding

Description coming soon.

Alex Tucker
Beehive Collective: Landscape Drawing

Description coming soon.

Sarah Wetstone
Gerry Masse: Sculptural Beauty Design

Jewelry is an ancient form of art used for cultural and personal expression. Foil relief is like a collage with several layers of shapes. This workshop will explore jewelry throughout history and observe the sculptures on view at Sloss Furnace to create a bracelet or related item. Gerry Masse’s industrial metal sculptures on display are inspired by family ties and the South. Made from steel, iron, and aluminum, they complement the iron structures of Historic Sloss and inspire jewelry whimsy!

Taylor Hollingsworth
Lonnie Holly: Junkyard beings

Junk Art is primarily sculpture made from discarded materials and found objects. The process of assembling found objects into a work of art was coined “assemblage” by Jean Dubuffet in the early 1950’s and challenged the ideas of what had traditionally been defined as art. Channeling Alabama assemblage artist, Lonnie Holley, children will make junk art sculpture. They will disassemble discarded electronics and toys then and reassemble parts and pieces into exciting, stagnant or kinetic junk art creatures.