Dripping paint: It can ruin a freshly coated wall, permanently damage a carpet—or, if done just right, create a multimillion-dollar piece of artwork.It can also be a means of expressing emotions, and that’s what Springs resident Joyce Raimondo hoped to teach the group of about 20 children at the Quogue Library on Saturday morning.
Ms. Raimondo, an artist and children’s book author, offers lessons across the country about renowned artists, such as Vincent Van Gogh and Pablo Picasso, based on her “Art Explorers” book series. On Saturday, she gave a presentation on drip painting and Jackson Pollock, the abstract expressionist artist from Springs best known for his drip paintings, on behalf of the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center in East Hampton. Her presentation on Saturday came from her book “Express Yourself! Activities and Adventures in Expressionism.”
After introducing the children to Mr. Pollock and his unusual style of painting, as well as the artwork of his late wife, Lee Krasner, Ms. Raimondo guided them in making their own drip paint artwork, first cutting shapes out of construction paper and pasting them to a piece of white paper before using wooden tongue depressors to drip and fling drops of paint across it.
While many cut out hearts, wavy lines and other soft shapes, then applied vibrant shades of pink, yellow and green to express happiness, a few chose to use more rigid shapes, like diamonds, and darker colors to convey a “scary” feeling. Some even decided to take a more haphazard approach, throwing about a bevy of hues, even swirling different colors together with their fingers.
“Children of all ages, from 4 years old up to teenagers, believe it’s a good way to express their emotions,” Ms. Raimondo said. “Each child gets to do it their own way—it’s not about following instructions or coloring inside the lines.”
Having been an artist herself for 30 years prior to starting her own business called Imagine That! Art Education, Ms. Raimondo led the children’s education program at the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan.
She noted that she moved to Springs about 10 years ago and has been working with the Pollock-Krasner House ever since.
Kathleen Johnson, programming coordinator at the Quogue Library, said Saturday’s event was, in her mind, a success, because all the children who attended had the opportunity to learn something new.
“It was a beautiful, color event to truly brighten things up on this dreary day,” she said. “I’m so happy to see how many children came out.”
Ms. Johnson said the library frequently hosts art-theme events and supports local artists by displaying their works in the library’s gallery.
Quogue resident Alicia Mack, who brought her 3-year-old daughter Amelia to the drip painting workshop, said it was a nice program and that her daughter “had a blast.”
Ms. Mack said the library has provided her and her family a sense of community since they moved to Quogue in August from South Carolina. She added that she works in pottery and her husband, Richard, teaches graphic design at Suffolk County Community College.
“We’re new to the area, but we’ve been going to the library a lot for the programs here, like this one,” she said. “It’s really provided us a great sense of community.”
Morgan Thompson, 8, attended the workshop with her best friend, Sophia Amato, also 8, and Morgan was one of the more vocal and knowledgeable participants. She answered several questions and offered up information, like Mr. Pollock’s nickname, “Action Jackson.”
Morgan, who lives in Quogue just like her best friend, said she enjoys art and Mr. Pollock’s work in particular. “I even have a pair of Jackson Pollock pants,” she said after the workshop.
On Sunday, the library hosted an event called Bowl of Plenty where bowls handcrafted by Ms. Mack and other local pottery artists were sold to benefit the food pantries in Westhampton and Hampton Bays. The bowls sold for $20 each, and patrons were able to use them to sample soups donated from local restaurants, Ms. Johnson said.