Fourth Grade Artists are studying the Art of Japan
Washington Irving artists are towards the end of their school wide study of art forms from around the world. The fourth grade has been designing hand fans and kokeshi dolls. Traditional kokeshi (こけし kokeshi ? ), are Japanese dolls, originally from northern Japan. They are handmade from wood, have a simple trunk with a few thin, painted lines to define the face. The body often has a floral design painted in red, black, and sometimes yellow, and covered with a layer of wax. One characteristic of kokeshi dolls is their lack of arms or legs. The bottom is marked with the signature of the artist. Since World War II, kokeshi designers have become very creative with their designs and began making animal kokeshis as well. Students each designed their own animal or figure, first by doing a 3-view schematic sketch and then drawing and inking directly on wooden forms.