Workshop instructions

Related artwork

Discuss

Claudia Moodoonuthi (b. 1995) is a Kaiadilt artist from Bentick Island in the Gulf of Carpenteria. She spent much of her childhood on Country with her family, fishing and hunting, developing a deep connection to the land and to the traditional ways of the Lardil and Kaiadilt peoples. These experiences are reflected through her bright and colourful artworks. Many of Moodoonuthi’s paintings depict waterholes, grasses, sea life and the many rocks off the coastline of Bentinck Island.

For her work 360 flip on country, 2014, Moodoonuthi collected discarded skateboards that reminded her of her childhood growing up on Bentinck Island. She covered them in traditional designs; the faces reference traditional Kaiadilt art and the bold striped and dotted compositions beneath the wheels reflect Lardil iconography. By working on these everyday objects she elevates their status – from everyday items to works of art that speak of identity, culture and place.

Moodoonuthi’s work also shows how art and design can intertwine. She has designed a series of coffee tables which pay homage to members of her family, and has collaborated with brands such as MECCA cosmetics, and the NGV Design Store developing designs for fashion and marketing. The designs draw directly from her vibrant, colourful and bold style of work. Her skateboards, design objects and collaborations demonstrate how artists can reach and engage with a larger audience through merging art with design.

Look at the works by Claudia Moodoonuthi and consider and discuss the following questions with your class:

  • Describe the colours, lines and patterns Moodoonuthi has used and share your words with a partner. For example, vibrant, bold and bright.
  • Discuss how Moodoonuthi has used the elements and principles of design in her work. For example, colour, line, patterning and movement.
  • What images or symbols do you see? What do they remind you of? How might the designs connect to Moodonuthi’s identity or sense of place?
  • Why do you think Moodoonuthi has selected skateboards as the canvas for her artwork?
  • How do her designs change the way we view the skateboards? Consider how this artwork might connect to the theme ‘celebrating the everyday’. How might you view the artworks differently if they were painted on a traditional canvas, or a different everyday object?
  • Think of an object that represents a place or activity that is special to you. What memories or experiences do you associate with this object? Share with a partner or with the whole class.
  • Would you consider the skateboards Moodoonuthi has made to be ‘art’ or ‘design’? Could they be both?

Resources & materials

  • Sketchbook or paper
  • Grey lead pencils
  • A4 black and coloured paper
  • Paint markers (such as Posca pens)
  • Scissors
  • Glue

Create

Idea development

  1. Choose an everyday object to create a design for. This might be something related to a hobby or interest such as a football or a violin, or it might be an object you use every day such as a hat or a chair.
  2. On a piece of A4 black paper draw an outline of the object in grey lead pencil, making sure the outline is big enough to fill the whole page.
  3. Think about what aspects of your everyday life you would like to celebrate. What makes you unique? Write down your ideas.
    You might like to consider special people, things and places in your life, hobbies and interests – things you like to do every day, or special celebrations that are important to you. For example, your pet dog, the beach, birthdays or a special pendant or charm.
  4. Choose three or four ideas from your brainstorm. Using white paper, draw an image or pattern that could represent each idea.
    Consider the relationship between your chosen object and the designs when making your choices.

Make

  1. Cut out your drawings and arrange them on your object to create a design. When you are happy with the composition, paste them down with glue.
  2. Using a paint based marker, fill the space around your images with patterns and blocks of colours that reflect or enhance the drawings.
    Consider the use of line, colour and pattern to give your design visual impact and to emphasise the meaning and significance of different elements.
  3. Trace around the outline of your object with a marker.
  4. Cut it out and paste on a coloured paper.

Present & reflect

Present your design to a partner and discuss:

  • What colours, lines and patterns did you choose and why?
  • How does the work reflect your everyday life – the people, places and things that are important to you?
  • What choices did you make about the composition and design of your final work? Would you do anything differently if you made it again?
  • In what ways has Moodoonuthi’s artwork inspired you today?

Student examples