Snakes, crocodiles, and cats — mummified!

This fall, one of the classes I’m teaching for CWC is called “Picture Perfect,” a program in which the kids take inspiration from art history and write a series of pieces.

Our first project is to explore ancient Egypt and make mummies. Long ago, I was in Egypt and explored many temples and ancient sites up and down the Nile, so this period of history is quite dear to me. I was able to tell the students a lot of personal stories about my time in Egypt.

egypt_edfu

While I was in Egypt, I saw countless mummies: cats, crocs . . . you name it. So, as a fun inspiration for our first story in the class, we’re building mummies.

We started by making the clay figures and then let them dry for a week. Next, we began “embalming” them.

cwchl2015_mummies00  cwchl2015_mummies01 cwchl2015_mummies02

This time, we tried something new: adding spices as part of the embalming process.

cwchl2015_mummies00a

I kind of like how it leaves some of them looking a little weathered.

cwchl2015_mummies03 cwchl2015_mummies04 cwchl2015_mummies05 cwchl2015_mummies06 cwchl2015_mummies07 cwchl2015_mummies08 cwchl2015_mummies09

Next week, we’ll add some adornments by adding some metallic paint.

For now, the students are working on stories that tell how their characters came to an end (in most cases, an untimely one) and then entered the Egyptian afterlife. They also are working with some Egyptian hieroglyphics to create cartouches for their characters. (A cartouche is a particular shape in Egyptian symbology that signifies the name of a pharaoh.)

cwchl2015_cartouche01

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