Potential Project


1.)   Collage image/images that speak to you in your journal provided to you for the PAGES program


2.) Overlay previous page, make sure it is blank 😉 Create a page of writing that reflects your collage or whatever you are inspired by.


3.) Cut each line into strips, but be sure not cut them out completely.


4.) Fold back and lay flat different combinations of words to manipulate your writing (cut-up technique) until your image and words connect to you, and each other.



5.) Glue down strips of writing to finalize your cut-up.


6.) Extract words, and embellish image with color pencils to make your art resonate with you and your viewers.




Hope this is informing and helpful

Sincerely, Bryan Moss

Quick and Dirty Guide: Pablo Picasso


Quick and Dirty Guide for Pablo Picasso

  • Pablo Picasso – born on October 25th, 1881 in Malaga, Spainbaby Picasso
  • Originally named Pablo Ruiz, later took on his mother’s name,Picasso
  • (14) Picasso's Mother (15) Picasso's Father
  • Child prodigy, Picasso learned everything about painting and drawing from his Father José Ruiz, who was a painting teacher (Art world refers to his father as the master of pigeons; his father’s art wasn’t that good)
  • the-barefoot-girl-18955dd1b6ebf789f8622e63c96a77e46ba7 7abebe93edffad0b12a19b41f6db98a1  bc36869aa71f020fdfe16e257603e9f1 Early MPB_110.843_2008_10_10 Picture-11 Portrait-of-the-Artists-Father-Pablo-Picasso-1896
  • At age sixteen, Picasso was accepted into the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Madrid, Spain
  • first-communion-1896 science-and-charity-1897 the-altarboy-1896
  • Picasso’s time was short lived at the Academy, for he disliked it and left
  • In 1900, Picasso landed in Paris; influenced by the nightlife, he created works of women dancing and drinking
  • (2) Nightlife1900 arton8333blog_231 a-spanish-couple-in-front-of-inn-1900 margot
  • 1901-1904 Blue Period: Picasso’s dear friend Carlos Casagemas committed suicide, forcing Picasso into a depression – Picasso expressed himself through monochromatic blue paintings – some paintings referencing his friend, Carlos, and other paintings were more symbolic.
  • PabloPicasso-La-Vie-1903 self5 (4) blueperdiod2 (16) celestina
  • 1904 – 1906 Rose Period: Picasso met Fernande Olivier, his new lover. Helping Picasso out of his depression and awakening his rose period, this pre-cubist style of work featured reoccurring characters such as harlequins, circus performers, and a classical examination of the figure – this period was referred to as the Rose Period, because Picasso used a pastel earth tone palette of pinks, blues, browns, reds (My personal thoughts are that this body of work has a late morning feeling about them – or a rainy spring)
  • (5) RoseperiodCIRCUS1 (6) RosePeriodCIRCUS2 (7) RosePeriodCIRCUS3
  • 1907 – 1912 African and Cubism – being influenced by African sculptures and masks, and their deconstruction of the human form (which create fractal geometric shapes) was the early influence on Picasso’s cubism – one can see this represented in two acclaimed works: Les Demoiselles D’avignon and Portrait of Gertrude Stein
  • (17) Picasso Africa (8) africancubismWOMEN PORTRAIT OF GERTRUDE STEIN
  • Picasso’s later influence for cubism came when he met Georges Braque – they would challenge the perception of the eye by reevaluating isolated parts of paintings and reconstructing them in new paintings, which creates different points in time captured in one painting – they would push this to its limits by adding collage, such as paper, wallpaper, and material.
  • (12) Womanwithlute portuguese (7) CubismPortrait
  • 1937-World War II Guernica – April 1937 Guernica was bombed by German and Italian Warplanes, which sent Picasso into a spitting rage – that year Picasso painted his most important painting ever; Guernica – the painting is in black, white and grey (which represents death – also, the way the information was received with was through newspapers) and you can see the newspaper representations by the black vertical dashes that are heavily implemented center left of the painting. Guernica traveled the world to raise awareness about the war and after fifty years, it was finally returned home to Madrid, Spain in 1981 where it has remained to this day
  • (11) guernica
  • Post War Picasso: Picasso took all his innovation and applied it to his craft, allowing him to become prolific at his craft – Picasso went from painting in different styles to working in different mediums, including three dimensional, collaging and print making
  • (18) Picasso Litho (19) Picasso Sculpture (20) Picasso Collage
  • Picasso passed away on April 8th, 1973
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  • Video Tutorial below of Picasso
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=he1dz6pVO0k&feature=youtu.be


African Art and Picasso

Good morning, everyone!

Here is just a quick video post which I found to be very interesting!  It’s about the influence of African art and Picasso’s work. It’s rather short – something to watch during your lunch break. The most affecting moment of the video, for me personally, is towards the end.  To highlight the quote, specifically, from Gus Casely-Hayford:  “I think these are very significant points of inspiration for Picasso, for Matisse, for some of the greatest artists for the 20th century, and the heartbreaking thing for me and for many other people is that this practice actually gives birth to the idea modernity at the turn of the 20th century comes to be known as primitive, and the practice inspired as primitivism. I can’t think of anything more wounding than that.”

This dialog will be examined in the gallery spaces with pieces by


Fred Wilson’s Picasso/Whose Rules?

And the work of

quel-avenir-pour-notre-artwhat-future-for-our-art-1997-1337948729_org samba-quel-avenir-image3 Who Future 1

Chéri Samba’s  Quel avenir pour notre art? (What future for our art?)

These works can be used to open the dialog about inspiration verses appropriation verses plagiarism.

Bryan Moss

Space, Shapes and the Silences Between


This is my silent space: my bedroom after dusk when the kids are in bed and I can have some time alone to meditate, journal, think.

“When he heard music, he no longer listened to the notes, but the silences between.  When he read a book, he gave himself over to the commas and semicolons, to the space after the period before the capital letter of the next sentence.  He discovered the places in the room where silence gathered; the folds of curtain drapes, the deep bowls of family silver.  When people spoke to him, he heard less and less of what they said and and more and more of what they were not.”

– Nicole Krauss, The History of Love

“Music was my refuge.  I could crawl into the spaces between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.”

– Maya Angelou, Gather Together in my Name

At the round table discussion with teachers, Dionne, and artist-in-residence Bryan Moss, we talked about how shape and negative space in the pieces from the After Picasso exhibition at the Wexner Center could be used as inspiration to discuss writing and the conscious use of silence, space, and the unsaid in poetry and prose.

The above quotes could be used as beginning inspiration.  In addition, here is a post called “Silence that Transforms Us.” In it, I write about silence in the classroom, and it includes a couple of really good links for more information on silence in conversation in order to listen, silence as an “endangered species,” and the disappearance of natural soundscapes because of human noise polluting the landscape.  Slightly tangential, but could maybe be used in some creative way.

-Brandi Lust

More Fascinating Objects…

During these pre-visits, I’ve been so struck by how students are able to generate funny, redemptive, sad, wise, and downright profound responses to visual objects.

Here’s a couple of lovely moments from today’s class at Franklin Heights (thanks for catching these, Dionne):

“I am more than who you think I am – I have a story of my own.” – Reinhard, Grade 9.

“I have no simplicity.” -Marena, Grade 9.

These lines undo me.

In the spirit of this work, here’s another fantastic resource if you are interested in continuing creative writing exercises surrounding intriguing/mysterious artifacts (especially as it relates to historical & cultural contexts).



“She lived inside someone’s locket” via The Museum of Ridiculously Interesting Things.


Poetry as Community: The Power of Asking

“Being listened to is so close to being loved that most people cannot tell the difference.” —David Oxberg

Pablo Neruda in his charming The Book of Questions asks:

What color is the scent of the blue weeping of violets?

Why doesn’t Thursday talk itself into coming after Friday?

Why do trees conceal the splendor of their roots?

Harold Chapman – Question Mark, London, UK, ca. 1960’s. Photo Credit: independent-collectors.com

Reading over Neruda’s questions, they feel very much much like tiny love poems–generous, thoughtful, considered. After all, questions are an invitation to move closer. They are, perhaps, the first syllable in the language of love.

This week, I have had the pleasure of working with PAGES students on collaborative poetry. Students view a similar object and then together build a poem, line by line. The first thing I often asked students to do in this process is to generate questions. Then, I asked them to listen the conversation that is being built as we circle the room and they offer their response. I have loved watching the sense of ownership and authorship bloom as students take time to ask, listen, answer, and then ask better. The investment students feel in this communal experience becomes palpable. Below is a sample of the process from Mr. Hering’s sophomore classroom at Hayes High School this week:

To be enclosed means you have to get creative


My creativity can set me free

Where will I go?

Escape the bars that contain you

Wings can help you fly away to something new

Why aren’t you flying?

Through these activities, I’ve witnessed a change come over each classroom’s attitude towards the experience of poetry. It becomes meaningful, exciting, relevant to their shared experience. Asia, a student from Westerville North said, “This feels just like an awesome mash-up between Beyoncé and Nicki Minaj. We’re good at this.”

Often, without developing questions, we do not know which nuance or complexity we most wish to investigate. Simultaneously, a good question is a gift. It says to the other person: I want to know this about you. I want to know who you are deeply. For you, I am willing to be silent. 

–Joy Sullivan

The Language of Touch: Tangible Poetry

I’ve been thinking a lot about tangibility lately. Why is it important to touch objects?What does their tactility express? What does it mean that to hold something is know it in some inexplicably intimate way?

A project I’m interested in exploring in upcoming Pages visits is the idea of a poem object. I’d love to see how students respond not only to mixed media, but also to the concept of tactile poetry as we think about The Object Lesson.

I was inspired by Poèm Objet by surrealist artist Andre Breton. This mesmerizing collage incorporates wood, object and poetry in one piece. Translated, the inscription on the plaster egg reads “I see / I imagine.”


Photo: National Galleries


I don’t consider myself a visual artist in any capacity so this project stretched me. Yet, I was challenged by the notion of “seeing” or “imagining” things in a new way.

A bit of process: First I found lines in my poetry I wanted to represent tactilely. Using a vintage cook book, I shredded the pages and applied them to plastic eggs. I used these reinvented books (book-eggs?) as pages€ for my poetry.


It became all about new ways of seeing and reimagining what I thought was even possible for my poems. But I found something about the practice of making things with my hands is jubilant, ripe, necessary. Through touch, I was reminded what is to love, hold, cradle, caress, find, and know.



Let me know if you’d like me to try this out with students coming up!

–Joy Sullivan


What Would You Take from the Burning House?

Burning House Photo jpeg

Joy Sullivan, poet, teacher and Pages Artist-in-Residence shared “The Story We Tell With Our Stuff” on the Pages blog a few months ago.

The On Being post features The Burning House, a project where people submit photos of what they would take with them if their house was burning down.  This inspired me to do the same and I posted the project on my blog- you can see my object descriptions and my five-year-old son’s image and list descriptions here, too.  

This project is so interesting and so much fun!  I can definitely see how it could be used in conjunction with The Object Lesson.  These photos could become list poems, snippets of narrative for each of the objects, a reflection on what is most important etc.

If any teachers are interested in doing this project with me, shoot me an email.  I can walk students through the steps, build it into a writing prompt, plan a gallery walk with you etc.  Basically whatever would be helpful.

-Brandi Lust

Blogging Challenge, Identity and Picassoheads

Task One: This week’s Edublog’s blogging challenge asks us to reflect on our online identity compared to our “real life” identity.  On my blog site and on Twitter, I tend to keep it professional.  I’m interested in education and technology and I think writing, reflecting and reading about education helps make me a better teacher.  For example, I’m completing this post because it’s something I’m asking my students to do (and if you “talk the talk” you need to “walk the walk”).  In “real life” I’m interested in my children and doing fun things outside of school.  I usually post these topics on Facebook.  My Facebook style is more personal and whimsical.

Task Two: One of our visits to the Wexner Center this year will be to experience “After Picasso: 80 Contemporary Artists.”  Some students and I played around with Picassohead when exploring possible avatars. I encourage PAGES students and teachers to take a look at the gallery; you might see some of our self-portraits and you can even make your own.  This is a fun way to introduce some of the elements of Picasso’s style!



 image: picassohead.com

Process, Play and Celebration: Writing Our Way Through

In my last post, I outlined the importance of process. Now, I’d like to consider ways we can incorporate and celebrate it in our classrooms.

Lately, I’ve been enchanted by some of the poems, projects, and installations coming out of Australia’s Red Room Poetry Object. What I especially like about The Red Room Project is that pieces of the process found their way into the final installation of the project. Students showcased their work in old suitcases, cabinets, wardrobes and even discarded fridges. They display all stages of the process, including anything from brainstorming to free writing, from initial to polished drafts. This idea feels relevant because it celebrates the idea of play alongside that of product. In this model, inspiration is as valued alongside perfection and process, even failure, becomes as worthwhile as “finished” pieces.

Mapping Process: Mapping process can be tricky. One tool I suggest to students is to utilize a private online blog to capture most of their initial fodder, drafts, and then final versions. It’s a handy way to record the multiple steps of the process and also a convenient record of artistic choices made along the way. When asked to justify and explain their personal aesthetic, it can be a great tool in owning and analyzing one’s authorship and voice.


Winning Poetry Object ‘suitcase’ installation by students at Rose Bay Secondary College. Photo: Photo: Red Room Company


Cultivating Play: As a teaching artist, I’ve found that incorporating the concept of “play” as highly generative first step. Writing games and classroom collaborations take a lot of the fear out of starting a project, bolster confidence, stimulate ideas through shared conversation and just help everyone not take themselves so seriously. Games such as exquisite corpse, collaborative poetry (i.e. renga), and pairing writing with visual art can be great places to start when introducing a lesson. It’s important to save and represent these moments in the final showcase.

installation 2

The Cabinet of Lost and Found installation at Sydney Writers’ Festival, 2006. Photo: Red Room Company

Embracing Celebration
: The knowledge that your work is going to be read, displayed and shared is one of the most stimulating, motivating and rewarding parts of the creative process. Often, my best poems are birthed from the knowledge I have a upcoming reading or that I am going to give a talk to a specific audience in the near future.  The Pages publication provides a great context for this kind of work, but I think classroom installation within the school could be also rewarding. Creating the idea of audience from an early point on often improve the quality of the work being produced. 

Installation 1

The Cabinet of Lost and Found installation at Sydney Writers’ Festival, 2006. Photo: Photo: Red Room Company

I’d love to hear your thoughts on your own process as well as the process you ask of your students. What works? What doesn’t work? How do you think these ideas might play out for The Object Lesson? Are installations in the classroom/school an option for your students?

“The Object Lesson” Writing Prompt Ideas

“What things are, and what they are doing, depends on where and when they are doing it. If, then, the definition of a thing or event must include a definition of its environment, we realize that any given thing goes with a given environment so intimately and inseparably that it is more difficult to draw a clear boundary between the thing and its surroundings.”

—Alan Watts

According to Karl Marx, human beings produce inanimate objects in order to achieve a sense of fulfillment. Marx claims we produce not necessarily due to necessity, but as a means of self-expression and self-understanding. Consider for a moment: the boxes of collected items in your closet, the memories you recall via artifacts—things as your tether to the past, things that helped create who you are in this moment.

The mental gymnastics of re-calling moments back to the present is something most of us do daily, purposefully and “accidentally” too. We’re more than our stuff, and yet we spend so much of our lives accumulating stuff–to what end? “The Object Lesson,” perhaps, endeavors an answer.

Memory is a tangible link that brings us into existence and let’s us know we matter, we’ve done stuff, we’ve had an impact. Objects are links to ourselves—and to others. Do we need objects to construct our sense of self? of home?

Opening Writing Prompt Option One.
Do you have an attic? maybe at your grandparent’s or at home?—what sort of objects, stuff, does the attic house? Choose an object from your attic (or some other) space. Write a piece from the perspective of this inanimate object endowing the object with an identity and personified sense of self. Consider documenting your choice in a creative photograph. 

I am stuck inside a musty box with three friends very much like me. Different shapes and colors, we’re unique and yet our purpose is mostly the same. We create magic and art. We are filled with limitless possibility. We sit eagerly, hoping to be chosen by the writer, by the artist, by the warm hand of our Gods. Which one of us will They want to use to describe, to draw, to capture?—I pray it be me, and not my neon rival. Without us, humans would be pent up, wishing there were something, some way to describe what they are feeling. With us, They start and end love affairs, armed conflicts, and give meaning to Their very lives. We may be unappreciated and we may be small, but we are a very important invention that has altered and will continue to alter the course of Their evolution.

Opening Writing Prompt Option Two.
In the museum of your life, what is your most prized possession and why? Pretend your artifact is on display in some future museum. Write the museum label for this item.

In a museum, object labels describe the individual object displayed. Typically the title of the work or a descriptive title phrase is given, followed by the date and place of creation, and the materials or technique of the object. There should be a brief description or commentary. An accession number is often given, and often the accession date. Some prefer in an object label a one word title followed by a 25–50 word description for the museum label. People want specific aspects of the object they might not notice at first glance or might not have already known (i.e. something unusual, material made of, date of artifact, who made). Most people want to know specifics like when it was made, why it was made, usage and when it became part of the museum.

Opening Writing Prompt Option Three.
Emma Forrest ponders, “Some people fear that they are no more than the sum of their cultural reference points: the books read, films seen, the posters on the walls, and records on rotation. I am happy to admit this. What then remains, for a vampire of pop culture when love is over? What of the books loaned, the records recommended? What gets passed to the next lover, what gets sold for cash at Rebel Rebel? When a relationship ends, I sell none of it, filing it all away for future reference, marveling at how the most dreadful person can turn you on to the most beautiful film or music. These gifts, given in ego—this is me, this is me, have some more of me—are like transferable tattoos. These books and videos, they are stronger than those ephemeral fights, even the ephemeral [lovemaking]. … When someone you love dies, it is common to take on some of their traits in order to keep them alive. The loss of love is like mourning, instead of tics you keep records, books, movies.” Write about a challenging human relationship that facilitated your new found love of some object, “gift,” or “cultural reference point given in ego.” Explore the term of this relationship and the item(s) you gained and the changes this fostered—if any—within you.