Zips by MFTA and a must-see at MoMA

This "CD weaving" was inspired by Barnett Newman's concept of "zips."

The computers at MFTA were taking their time to get warmed up this morning–i.e. no Internet… This left me some time to make a miniature zip “CD weaving” out of ribbon, trim, a CD case and rubber bands–all currently available for our recipients in the MFTA warehouse!

Although it features a zip of sorts, this CD weaving is nothing like its inspiration, Barnett Newman’s monumental paintings. “Newman’s compositions are built around a strict format: a field of color is bisected vertically by one or a few bands (narrow or wide) that he referred to as “zips” (Barnett Newman, Timeline of Art History, Metropolitan Museum).

These paintings demand to be seen in person. An excellent example is on view at MFTA recipient, Museum of Modern Art, where it is part of the permanent collection. Although I don’t normally cite dimensions on this blog, I did here. This painting is 7 feet high and 17 feet long! Go to MoMA and spend some time with “Man, heroic and sublime” (open until 8:30, Friday, Saturday and Sunday ❤ u MOMA summer hours)!

"Vir Heroicus Sublimis" (1950-51) by Barnett Newman. Oil on canvas. 7' 11 3/8" x 17' 9 1/4" Museum of Modern Art, New York. © 2011 Barnett Newman Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

We’ve been working a lot with this CD weaving concept. Students really enjoy creating the weavings and they’re made with items that don’t really move off the warehouse floor–you know you’ve seen the rubber band bin and skipped over our cache of Masta Killa CDs–so teachers and social service providers can bring art-making to their sites across the city.

TEACHERS! Come explore our materials (which are FREE to all registered NYC DOE schools) and try your hand at making art projects in our studio during our July P credit courses. During these HANDS-ON courses you will learn tons of art projects made from stuff you’re throwing away supplemented with our FREE materials and get ideas for linking these projects to teaching the Common Core Standards.

Click here for more information on earning P credits with Materials for the Arts this July. We offer three, week-long courses: “Creative Infusion,” “Raw Fibers” and “Paper.” While these courses are designed for teachers, they are open to anyone interested in creative reuse and making art; follow the link above and look for information on auditing a course as a non-credit participant.

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