Helene Woods

Acrylic Inks

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Teaching Artist Statement

I use the creation of painted human figures with imagined biologies to provide insights into others' physical worlds and teach compassion. Participants learn skills with acrylic inks to explore what it might feel like to have a chronic disease, have differing abilities, or be a different size or gender.

Explore and Nurture Creativity in the classroom

Creativity is explored through use of the materials themselves, which can create a multitude of organic forms. Participants then use those forms to create imagined organs, circulatory systems, etc. to develop a human figures. Because the figure is not yet fully defined, the creativity is spontaneous. Participants learn how to embellish and grow what appears in front of them, and understand there is no incorrect answer.

Residency Projects

Creating Compassion - Participants will create imagined anatomies within human figures on paper, through which they will gain an understanding of abstraction and the use of acrylic inks. In addition, participants will develop a visual language to communicate what we can’t see, building compassion about our own and others’ physical states. Participants will create abstracted human figures that explore what it means physically to have chronic pain, or depression, or even good health. At the end participants will have a beautiful abstracted human figure, insight into how people with or without disabilities or health issues may be experiencing, and new tools to communicate their own feelings.