20 Famous Artists Crafts for Kids

Art is a powerful tool for children. It allows them to express themselves, develop fine motor skills, and explore their creativity.

But how do you make art history engaging for young minds? Enter the world of famous artist crafts! This approach combines learning about art icons with fun, hands-on activities.

This blog post offers 20 artist-inspired crafts, perfect for kids of all ages. Each project introduces a renowned artist and their style, followed by a creative activity that sparks imagination.

Gather your art supplies, unleash your inner artist, and get ready for a journey through the world of art!

Monet’s Water Lilies:

  • The Artist: Claude Monet, a pioneer of Impressionism, is famous for his soft, dreamlike paintings. His Water Lilies series is a stunning example.
  • The Craft: Capture the essence of Monet’s water lilies with a beautiful finger painting project. Use a shallow tray or dish filled with a thin layer of water. Add drops of different colors (blues, greens, purples) and let your child gently swirl the colors with their fingers. Press white construction paper onto the water’s surface to create a water lily masterpiece.

Van Gogh’s Starry Night:

  • The Artist: Vincent van Gogh, a Post-Impressionist artist, is known for his vibrant colors and swirling brushstrokes. His Starry Night is a famous example.
  • The Craft: Create your own starry night sky with cotton swabs and paint. Use a dark blue or black background and dip cotton swabs in white and yellow paint to create swirling stars. Add dots of different colors for a touch of Van Gogh’s vibrancy.

Kandinsky’s Colorful Circles:

  • The Artist: Wassily Kandinsky, an abstract expressionist, used shapes and colors to evoke emotions. His use of concentric circles is a signature style.
  • The Craft: Let your child explore color and shape with a Kandinsky-inspired project. Cut out different sized circles from colored construction paper. Glue them onto a background in a playful arrangement, overlapping for a dynamic effect.

Picasso’s Portraits:

  • The Artist: Pablo Picasso, a leading figure in Cubism, deconstructed and reassembled forms in his portraits.
  • The Craft: Channel Picasso’s cubist style with a fun portrait project. Take photos of your child from different angles (front, side) and cut them out. Glue the pieces onto a background in a playful, overlapping way to create a unique portrait.

Matisse’s Paper Cutouts:

  • The Artist: Henri Matisse, another leading figure in the modern art movement, created vibrant collages with cut paper.
  • The Craft: Introduce the art of collage with a Matisse-inspired project. Pick out colorful construction paper and cut out various shapes (circles, squares, triangles). Glue them onto a background to create a whimsical collage.

Georgia O’Keeffe’s Flowers:

  • The Artist: Georgia O’Keeffe, an American modernist, painted magnified close-ups of flowers, highlighting their beauty and detail.
  • The Craft: Capture the essence of O’Keeffe’s flowers with a creative drawing project. Provide your child with a magnifying glass and a real flower. Let them observe the flower’s details, then draw a close-up picture, focusing on its unique shapes and textures.

Andy Warhol’s Pop Art:

  • The Artist: Andy Warhol, a leading figure in Pop Art, used bold colors and repeated images to create iconic works.
  • The Craft: Create a pop art masterpiece inspired by Warhol. Choose a simple object (toy car, flower) and have your child draw it multiple times on a piece of paper. Use vibrant colors and consider adding a bold background for a true pop art feel.

Keith Haring’s Bold Lines:

  • The Artist: Keith Haring, a street artist, used simple lines and figures to convey powerful messages in his work.
  • The Craft: Explore bold lines and figures with a Haring-inspired project. Use black construction paper or cardboard as your base. Cut out simple shapes like figures, dogs, or hearts and glue them onto a contrasting background for a striking effect.

Frida Kahlo’s Self-Portraits:

  • The Artist: Frida Kahlo, a Mexican artist, used her self-portraits to express her identity and emotions.
  • The Craft: Encourage self-expression with a Frida Kahlo-inspired self-portrait project. Provide your child with a mirror and art supplies. Let them draw a self-portrait and incorporate symbolic elements that represent things they love or things that are important to them.

Jackson Pollock’s Drip Painting:

  • The Artist: Jackson Pollock, a leading figure in Abstract Expressionism, created energetic paintings by dripping paint onto a canvas.
  • The Craft: Get messy and explore the world of abstract expressionism with a Pollock-inspired drip painting project. Lay a large sheet of plastic or newspaper on the floor. Secure a canvas or heavy cardboard sheet on top. Mix tempera paint with a little bit of water to make it pourable. Dip a paintbrush in the paint, hold it over the canvas, and flick your wrist to create splatters. Experiment with different colors and techniques for a truly abstract masterpiece!

Grant Wood’s American Gothic:

  • The Artist: Grant Wood, an American painter, is known for his realistic portraits that often depicted rural life. His painting American Gothic is a famous example.
  • The Craft: Have some fun with perspective and portraiture with a Wood-inspired project. Take two pictures: one close-up of your child’s face and another full-body shot from a distance. Print them out and cut out the head from the close-up picture. Glue the head onto the body from the full-body shot in a way that creates a humorous perspective shift. Add props like a pitchfork (made of cardboard) for a touch of American Gothic homage.

Yayoi Kusama’s Dots:

  • The Artist: Yayoi Kusama, a Japanese contemporary artist, is known for her use of polka dots and infinity mirrors.
  • The Craft: Explore the world of patterns with a Kusama-inspired project. Provide your child with a variety of objects – marbles, cotton balls, even their own fingers! – and different colored paints. Let them create a polka-dotted masterpiece on paper, fabric, or even themselves (with washable paint, of course!).

Piet Mondrian’s Grids:

  • The Artist: Piet Mondrian, a founder of the De Stijl movement, used geometric shapes and primary colors in his grid-based paintings.
  • The Craft: Introduce the concept of geometric shapes and primary colors with a Mondrian-inspired project. Cut out squares, rectangles, and triangles from colored construction paper in red, yellow, blue, and black. Let your child arrange them on a white background to create their own colorful grid.

Michelangelo’s Sculptures:

  • The Artist: Michelangelo, a Renaissance sculptor, painter, and architect, is known for his awe-inspiring sculptures like David.
  • The Craft: Explore the world of 3D art with a Michelangelo-inspired project. Use air-dry clay or modeling dough to sculpt a simple figure or object. This is a great opportunity to discuss the concept of form and proportion. Once the sculpture dries, your child can paint it for an extra artistic touch.

Leonardo da Vinci’s Inventions:

  • The Artist: Leonardo da Vinci, a true Renaissance man, was not only a painter and sculptor but also an inventor.
  • The Craft: Spark your child’s imagination with a da Vinci-inspired invention project. Provide them with recycled materials like cardboard, paper tubes, and string. Challenge them to design and build their own invention, inspired by da Vinci’s flying machines or other creations.

Gustav Klimt’s Ornate Patterns:

  • The Artist: Gustav Klimt, a Symbolist painter, is known for his use of gold leaf and intricate patterns.
  • The Craft: Introduce the concept of decorative patterns with a Klimt-inspired project. Fold a piece of paper in half and create a symmetrical design with a pencil on one side. Open the paper and reveal a beautiful mirrored pattern. Your child can then decorate the pattern with paint, markers, or even glitter for a touch of Klimt’s golden opulence.

Edvard Munch’s The Scream:

  • The Artist: Edvard Munch, an Expressionist painter, is known for his use of bold colors and emotional themes. His painting The Scream is a famous example.
  • The Craft: Explore emotions and self-expression with a Munch-inspired project. Provide your child with art supplies and ask them to create a self-portrait that reflects an emotion they feel strongly about, like happiness, sadness, or anger. Encourage them to use expressive lines and colors to convey their emotions.

Georgia O’Keeffe’s Landscapes:

  • The Artist Revisited: We return to Georgia O’Keeffe, but this time focusing on her stunning landscapes, particularly those depicting the American Southwest.
  • The Craft: Capture the vastness and beauty of the desert with an O’Keeffe-inspired landscape project. Use watercolors or pastels to create a soft, blended background in browns, oranges, and purples. Then, let your child add details like cacti, mountains, or even bleached animal bones (cut from white paper) for a touch of the desert’s unique character.

Salvador Dalí’s Melting Clocks:

  • The Artist: Salvador Dalí, a Surrealist painter, is known for his dreamlike and often bizarre imagery. His melting clocks are a famous example.
  • The Craft: Explore the world of surrealism with a Dalí-inspired project. Draw a simple clock face on a piece of paper. Cut out irregular shapes from colored construction paper and glue them onto the clock, creating a melting effect. Encourage your child to add other dreamlike elements, like ants crawling on the clock or a landscape melting in the background.

Henri Rousseau’s Jungle Scenes:

  • The Artist: Henri Rousseau, a Naïve art painter, created vibrant and imaginative scenes inspired by jungles he had never visited.
  • The Craft: Spark your child’s imagination with a Rousseau-inspired jungle project. Use large pieces of construction paper to create the background of the jungle. Let your child cut out shapes for animals like lions, tigers, and monkeys from colorful construction paper. They can then glue the animals onto the background, adding details like leaves and vines for a lush jungle feel.

Bonus Project: Make Your Own Art Gallery!

After completing these artist-inspired crafts, why not create a mini art gallery to showcase your child’s masterpieces? Hang their artwork on a wall or string up a clothesline. Dim the lights, put on some classical music, and invite family and friends for a gallery opening!

Remember, there are no right or wrong ways in these art projects. The most important thing is to have fun, explore different artistic styles, and spark your child’s creativity!

Sohaib Hasan Shah

Sohaib's journey includes 10+ years of teaching and counseling experience at BCSS School in elementary and middle schools, coupled with a BBA (Hons) with a minor in Educational Psychology from Curtin University (Australia) . In his free time, he cherishes quality moments with his family, reveling in the joys and challenges of parenthood. His three daughters have not only enriched his personal life but also deepened his understanding of the importance of effective education and communication, spurring him to make a meaningful impact in the world of education.

Leave a Comment