Oldenburg’s Plates of Food

Teaching Art

Pop art is a great way to get students excited about art history and appreciation. What child doesn’t appreciate a giant banana peel or a humungous slice of cake, right!?

So, for a sculpture project, students created plates of food inspired by the artwork of pop artist, Claes Oldenburg.

Each table was delegated a different meal or dish – breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert. After a demonstration of construction tips, students began building the food they wanted to make using cardboard, newspaper and masking tape.

The following week students used toilet paper, newspaper strips and paper mache to build up areas as well as cover and smooth seams. Now, I must warn you, if you live in a humid climate, the flour and water saturated toilet paper will begin to smell, attract fruit flies and potentially mould over, but it will dry eventually, I promise!

Once dried, students can paint the base colours of the food and the following week they can paint details and add other materials such a felt, plastic sheeting and yarn to add toppings and texture. Lastly, I helped students to glue their food items on to a paper plate to secure them properly.

Bon appetite and cheers to you Claes!

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