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Open Studio From Home:
Charles Henry Alston

Sat, Apr 24, 2021
11–11:40 am

Online, via Zoom

Families with kids of all ages

You are invited to Open Studio From Home, free weekly online art classes with Whitney educators! Participants will experiment, create, and learn together with at-home art materials.  

Charles Henry Alston created this family portrait in bold blocks of color and lines that he made by scraping the surface of the paint with a palette knife—a tool with a blunt steel blade that artists often use for mixing or applying paint. His painterly style is both figurative and abstract. Alston wrote that this painting was “an attempt to express the security, stability, and human fulfillment which the ideal family represents.” 

Together we will create colorful scratch boards. Then, we will make bold scratch art family portraits! 


  • Thick paper or card stock
  • Crayons or oil pastels
  • Dish soap
  • Black tempera paint
  • Thick paint brush 
  • Small container
  • Something pointy (a chopstick, paperclip, or skinny stick)

This event will have automated closed captions through Zoom. Live captioning is available for public programs and events upon request with seven business days advance notice. We will make every effort to provide accommodation for requests made outside of that window of time. To place a request, please contact us at or (646) 666-5574 (voice). Relay and voice calls welcome.

Learn more about access services and amenities.



A 30-second online art project:
Ryan Kuo, Hateful Little Thing

Learn more

Vaccination required. All visitors aged 5+ must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination, in accordance with NYC requirements. Visitors aged 18+ must also show photo ID. Face coverings are required. Review the Whitney’s safety guidelines.