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Papier-mâché Lisa Chui

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1 Papier-mâché Lisa Chui

2 What is Papier-mâché ? > Papier-mâché (French word for "chewed paper”), is a material consisting of paper pieces or pulp, sometimes reinforced with textiles, bound with an adhesive, such as glue, starch, or wallpaper paste.

3 History of Papier-mâché
>Despite the French sounding name, papier-mâché was not made in France until the mid 17th century. However, they were the first country in Europe to do so. >Papier-mâché originated from China; the inventors of paper itself. The Chinese used papier mache to make helmets, which they toughened by many layers of lacquer. Examples have been found dating back to the Han Dynasty (BC 202 – AD 220). >From China, the interest in papier-mâché spread to Japan and Persia, where it was used in mask making and festival activities. Eventually it spread across the world. Large imports of papier-mâché objects swamped European markets. This led France to start making its own work, and England followed in the 1670s. It was not popular until the late 1700’s and into the 1800’s, when it became widely used.

4 Papier-mâché lived on in America more as a craft form rather than a manufacturing material. Women started to make useful and decorative household objects. In the 1960’s a bit more papier-mâché interest was injected by a New York artist called Gemma, who while working with her husband in Mexico managed to stir up a lot of interest amongst Mexican artists who were inspired by her work and later even taught by her. This started Mexico’s long history of using papier-mâché for festivals and traditions, which are still going on today. Today, papier-mâché is extremely popular and is more than just a craft. Many artists use it as a medium for their work.

5 Gemma Taccogna Inspirational Papier-mâché Artist
Gemma Taccogna ( ) is best known for her papier-mâché heads in the 1960s. Born in Italy, Gemma was an artist from a very young age. She lived in California most of her life and in the late 1940s and early 1950s she found her first big success selling her creations to Nina Ricci and Schiaparelli. Hat designer Mr. John used Gemma's heads to display his hats in his New York boutique. In 1954 she moved to Mexico with her husband where she started a papier-mâché studio and went on to create amazing work that was collected by Peggy Guggenheim and sold to stores such as Neiman Marcus. Hollywood celebrities commissioned work from her. Gemma considered herself as a sculptor so she experimented with all kinds of forms. Sometimes she glued objects onto her papier-mâché work making it similar like collage. She sometimes added fabric and other materials to her work to make it more creative.

6 In 1966 after seeing her work copied and mass produced Gemma decided to shut down her shop and move back to the united states. She continued to work and expanded into tiles and jewelry as well as teaching art classes. She left her mark in Mexico because she made it possible for many people to have work as well as open their own companies. In Mexico, small companies sprang up that were doing papier-mâché , individuals were making them from home and villages were also doing it. Despite some people copying her work, Gemma was content that she was able to encourage people to be their own, be creative, work hard and make it happen. To this day papier-mâché artists marvel at how smooth (just like porcelain) Gemma was able to make her pieces-which is very difficult to achieve with this medium.


8 For Gemma’s Famous Creations:



11 Getting Started Papier-mâché is really easy to do, and there are very few requirements. You will need... - Paper (newsprint is ideal) - Adhesive - Paintbrush - Plastic table covering - Paints - Patience!

12 It is advisable to prepare everything before starting
It is advisable to prepare everything before starting. Firstly, tear the newspaper into strips about an inch wide by 4 inches long. This is only approximate. Tear the paper with the grain. Make your adhesive. There are many different recipes but below you will find the most common.

13 Papier-mâché recipes for adhesive
Note: all adhesives can be used with both layering and pulp methods of Papier-mâché but the texture and result varies depending on the recipe. Different Recipes: 1) Flour and water: 2) Wallpaper paste glue: 3) Watered down white glue 4) Ms. Chui’s recipe: Mix 1 part of flour to 4 parts of lukewarm water. Mix it really well making sure there are no clumps. Add half a part of white glue. Mix it well. When you have decided which glue to use, the next thing to do is to decide what to make. To start is it advisable to use something to mould on.

14 Moulds: Balloons Cheap and indispensable. No release agent needed. The balloon will tear itself away from your dried papier-mâché easily when burst. Bowls and plates These will need to have a release agent applied first to stop the papier-mâché sticking to them.

15 Materials for Papier-mâché Sculpture:
*All kinds of throw away materials can be used to sculpt with papier-mâché : Cardboard boxes - Sides can be cut out to make flat panels. Packaging or masking tape. Wire netting - this can be cut and bent into all sorts of shapes and then covered with papier-mâché . Watch the sharp edges! Bamboo canes - these can be cut to length and used to hold a sculpture rigid. Have a look around and you will be surprised just how many things you can find to use.

16 Layered Papier-mâché:
Paste the strips of paper both sides with a paintbrush. Place your strips one at a time over the object to be covered and smooth down to remove air bubbles. Cover with two to three layers at a time. Do not put too many on at once or it will take too long to dry. When it is completely dry, you can gradually build up as many layers as you require until you have the required thickness. To add features such as rims, handles or decoration, stick pieces of cardboard onto the model with masking tape. Cover the whole object in more papier-mâché . When completely dry, paint with a coat of glue to seal it and kill the newsprint.

17 Painting Papier-mâché :
Any paint can be used to paint your papier-mâché artwork. The most popular paint is water based acrylic which we will be using as it also dries quickly. Remember that with papier-mâché , whatever paint you use, you must seal your work first. We will use a coat of white glue to seal it before applying paint. This will make the work more durable and pieces won’t tear off. After painting, we will varnish the work to protect its surface and it also gives a nice, shiny gloss.

18 Procedure Select a moving object, animal or figure to sculpt your Papier-mâché piece. Remember that whatever you select must appear to be moving or in action. Use Google images to help you get some ideas. In your sketchbook, design what you will be building. Draw a front, back, side and top view of you object/animal/figure in action. It is important to have it in different angles. Color it. Think about what materials you will need. Are you creating everything out of newsprint or will you be adding additional materials? Do you need a mould? If so, how will you attached it? Think about the position of your final piece…will it be standing on its own or will you need to build a platform? Start collecting and bringing additional materials from home such as cereal boxes, yogurt containers, yarn, etc. You are now ready to mix your Papier-mâché Paste and start the building process (please refer to slides #11-17 for specific instructions). When done building , you will seal it with glue, then paint and varnish it.

19 Examples



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