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Paul Klee Castle Collage

Red Balloon, 1922 by Paul Klee

Paul Klee was an important painter in the history of modern art.  I have always been drawn to his colorful, abstract pictures.  Children can relate to the simple geometric shapes and bold colors.  His art has been related to Expressionism, Cubism and Surrealism.

Castle and Sun, 1928 by Paul Klee

Swiss artist Paul Klee painted the Castle and Sun with simplified shapes, but viewers can easily see the way the shapes form a castle or city-like scene.  For this lesson, we are going to paint colorful swatches of color and cut them into geometric shapes.  Then, we will assemble them to make a building, castle or city scene.

To start this project, look at some examples of Paul Klee’s artwork, such as the Castle and Sun and Cat and Bird.  You can pick up the book The Cat and the Bird: A Children’s Book Inspired by Paul Klee which has many beautiful images reminiscent of his artwork.

Paul Klee Castle CollagesNote:  This blog post was sponsored by Dab and Dot Paint Markers, but all opinions and ideas are my own.


Grade Level:  K-3


Dab and Dot Markers (1)1.  Start by creating swatches of color on the white paper by smearing or dotting paint with the Dab and Dot Paint Markers.

Dab and Dot Markers (2) Dab and Dot Markers (3) Dab and Dot Markers (4) Dab and Dot Markers (6)2.  You can combine the dotters with watercolor paints.  Paint patterns, solid colors, stripes or designs with the watercolors.  Here I have painted purple watercolor stripes and some watercolor washes on top of the dots.

Dab and Dot Markers (7) Dab and Dot Markers (9)3.  After the papers are dry, cut the paintings into geometric shapes of various sizes.  Cut circles, rectangles, squares, triangles and arches.

Dab and Dot Markers (11) Dab and Dot Markers (12)4.  (Optional)  To add solid color pieces (but in an interesting way), cut out swatches of color from magazine pages.  We also used scrapbook paper.

Dab and Dot Markers (13) Dab and Dot Markers (15)5.  Now that you have a pile of shapes, arrange and stack them on your paper to create castles, towers and city buildings.  Use glue sticks to adhere the pieces to the page.  Here are my examples.

Paul Klee Art ProjectI love the look of magazine color swatches combined with the painted papers.  The little ladder on the right side of the page was a design I found in a magazine!

Paul Klee Inspired CastleHere is an example by my daughter who is in Kindergarten.  She used some of the shapes I had cut out and then she cut out her own.  She had the idea to use some of our scrapbook paper.  I think her picture is really fun!  She even wanted to cut out that strip of blue for the sky.  The blue strip of sky at the top really is a developmental thing!

Daria CastleHave you taught about Paul Klee’s artwork before?  Share in the comments!

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About Marcia Beckett

Marcia is an elementary art teacher and loves painting, drawing, sculpture, art journaling and clay. Her blog, Art is Basic, features many exciting art projects for kids.