Goldfish Soap Sculpture | Lesson
from the Lesson Zone Index
Students will be introduced to the art of Renaissance artist Michelangelo, or French sculptor Auguste Rodin, and will create a subtractive process sculpture. This free lesson plan is in fulfillment of Standard #4: K-4 and Standard #4: 5-8 of the National Standards for Art Education: Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures.
Tell students, "Today you will learn basic sculpting techniques and terms as you carve your own soap sculpture. Michelangelo/Rodin carved many subtractive process sculptures from large blocks of mable. Weather you start with marble, or a bar of soap, the technique is the same - remove (take away) the stuff that's not the thing you are sculpting."
Tell students, "Draw a goldfish on the side of your bar of soap."
Tell students, "Carefully cut away the soap until you reach the lines you made to define your goldfish".
Tell students, "Begin to shape your goldfish by rounding the top and bottom, and by flattening the tail. Finally add the eyes."
Tell students, "If you would like to smooth your sculpture out a bit, wet your fingers with water and then rub them over the surface of your goldfish."
As the students work, you can quiz them on a few facts about Michelangelo/Rodin.
(Students might enjoy carving a heart as an alternative project.)