Colorful Collage

Emma Amos said: “Every time I think about color it’s a political statement.” With this painting, Amos asks: is the body coloring the environment or does the environment color the body? Notice how the artist depicted a woman’s head and shoulders at the bottom of the canvas, and a pair of legs at the top. Notice the relationship between the colors in this painting, and which colors Amos put next to each other. Look at the red shapes in this painting. How do they appear when they are placed next to different colors?

Make your own collage materials! Choose up to six colors. Use paint to cover a whole sheet of paper with just one color. Then paint another piece of paper with a different color, until you have six colors. Let them dry. You could also look through your recycling bin for pieces of colored paper. Use scissors, colored paper, and glue or clear tape to make a colorful collage of abstract shapes. Include a figure or an object in your colorful collage if you like. Explore how your colors interact with each other.

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Emma Amos, Baby, 1966. Oil on canvas, 46 1/2 × 51 in. (118.1 × 129.5 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; purchased jointly by the Whitney Museum of American Art, with funds from the Painting and Sculpture Committee; and The Studio Museum in Harlem, museum purchase with funds provided by Ann Tenenbaum and Thomas H. Lee T.2018.33a-b. © Emma Amos; courtesy of the artist and RYAN LEE Gallery, New York

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