Creativity Unleashed – Fun at the Kids Workshop with Maja Maljević

Text by Christa Swanepoel

On Saturday the 26th of March the David Krut Gallery was proud to host a kid’s printmaking workshop with artist Maja Maljević, which was a roaring success and that all of the adults involved and seven talented and creative kids are sure to remember for a long time. 

Curious pedestrians walking up and down Jan Smuts Avenue in Parkwood slowed their stride when passing by the David Krut Gallery last Saturday to find out why the usually tranquil and still interior one expects when walking past an art gallery was filled instead with bustling movement and the excited chiming and chatter of children’s voices. Many of onlookers from the busy sidewalk peered through the floor-to-ceiling windows and saw small hands working furiously over tables strewn with colour, set on creating masterpieces to match the likes of Picasso himself.  

Upon arrival at 10am that morning, the seven children that took part in the workshop were shy yet excited to meet artist Maja Maljević, whose work they soon learned more about. The workshop aimed to teach the children about abstract art, layering different mediums, creating unique shapes and patterns, collage and printmaking, and for this Maja’s artworks were a great example. 

Maja and the kids discuss her work Unique Position
The kids picked coloured paper and drawing materials in anticipation to start.

The workshop started with a question-and-answer style discussion while viewing Maja’s work that is currently hanging in the gallery. The kids were encouraged to engage in new creative ways when identifying all of the different colours and shapes that form part of Maja’s characteristic style. Where an unknown shape lacked a name, one was assigned to it by the kids, thus new names such as “squadoval” were invented to refer to a shape that resembles a square made of ovals, but that could also be mistaken for the silhouette of a butterfly-winged dog.  

Once the discussion got the creative juices flowing the kids moved on to a station where they drew wild shapes onto sheets of coloured paper, which would later be cut up and used as collage elements to the final artwork. 

The silkscreen process fascinated the young participants.

Now on to the really cool stuff! The children were fascinated to witness the silkscreen and linocut demonstrations: various different colours of ink were applied to different silkscreens and linos, and each child could choose which patterns and colours they wanted to print in their own artworks. Many moving parts ensured both excitement and caution, but under the watchful eye and careful guidance of David Krut Workshops experienced print technicians Sarah Judge and Kim-Lee Loggenberg, each child could print away to their heart’s content. The silkscreens and pre-carverd linos used in this workshop were similar to those that Maja Maljević uses in her work Unique Position which was hanging on the wall just overhead of the children. This really gave them a sense of all of the different possibilities available when making abstract work, even though they all used the same matrix’s, each artwork came out totally unique and vastly distinguishable from each other.  

In the end, each inspired participant went home later that afternoon with a set of totally unique monotypes that they can take pride in. 

If you and your child are interested in participating in the next David Krut kids and adults workshops, you can send an email to [email protected] to subscribe to our mailing list so that you can be the first to know of any future workshops. 

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