In Vincent's World

   by Laura Revelt for Re-Invent a Work of Art (2013)

Inspiration Piece: The Bedroom at Arles/ The Bedroom, Vase with Twelve Sunflowers, The Starry Night, Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear

Inspiration Artist: Vincent Van Gogh

When I approached this project I focused on combining and reinterpreting rather than re-inventing art. Since the majority of the subject matter of Vincent van Gogh’s work is everyday people, places and objects, I was inspired to assimilate multiple paintings into one project. I really enjoyed this project and its many challenges though oddly, the hardest part of the process was conserving the one stick of hot glue.

I started out by cutting the Mystery Box apart along the seams. I used the cardboard for the walls of the room, the window and pieces with the gold decoration from the front of the box on them for the “painting’s” frame. I painted the walls, window and “Starry Night” with acrylic paint, as I did for the rest of the components of my project. I experimented with multiple brush types in order to produce solid or sketchy textures, like that of van Gogh’s style.

I kept the larger piece of wood for the floor as is, except I painted it and in order to make it look dirty, I sprinkled sawdust from sawing various pieces of wood throughout the project on in it while the paint was drying. The walls and floor are attached with hot glue and Elmer’s glue.

To build the bed I cut the wood with a utility knife and sanded it. The bed frame is one layer of wood and the head and foot boards are two layers. I cut a notch in the head and foot boards to support the frame and used Elmer’s glue to attach the side panels. I used the fabric for the blanket and pillows, the Styrofoam for the interior of the pillows and paper pulp to stuff the bed. I attached the blanket to the frame with hot glue.

The end table and chair were similarly created through wood cut by a utility knife and a saw, attached with Elmer’s glue, and finally, painted. The seat of chair is unraveled and then wrapped rope.

I made the flower pot with the modeling clay and shaped it by hand and with a clay shaping tool. The sunflowers consist of wrapped pulp for the petals and then shaped with a utility knife, balled- up paper pulp with Elmer’s glue for the seeds, and painted wire for the stems.

The towel hanging on the left wall is simply a piece of fabric hanging from a small piece of wire embedded in the cardboard.

Van Gogh, himself, is made of a hand- twisted wire frame of which the wire pieces are connected and clamped at major joints of the body. I used Sculpey clay for his head, waist and boots, fabric for his pants and coat, and glued paper pulp for his hat and bandage on his head. I added details to the clay by using the wire as a clay shaping tool.