Tipu’s Tiger

constructing Tipu's TigerWe’ve been working on this art project for many months (on and off).  It’s more complicated than anything we’ve tried before, so be gentle with us.

It all started when we were sent a copy of a lovely book by Dorling Kindersley called My Art Book of Animals.  There are lots of lovely art projects in this book, all of which are based on works by famous works of art often by famous artists and which are inspired by animals.  There’s quite a diversity of choices from Egyptian art, through to Dürer, Rubens, Stubbs and onto more modern artists like Klee and Picasso.  Now I wanted to try a work by Klee which didn’t look too complicated, but H had other ideas.

painting a manH’s choice seems to be the most complicated project in the book.  He wanted to make a copy of Tipu’s Tiger.  This work of art is in the Victoria & Albert Musuem.  The original is a life-sized sculptured that has been carved from wood and painted.  It dates to around 1793 and was made in Mysore, India for Tipu Sultan, an Indian ruler.  For Tipu Sultan the tiger was a holy symbol of power over his enemies and he had tiger decorations everywhere.  The tiger is an automaton: the tiger growls, the victim cries out and tries to shield himself when the handle is turned.  The tiger also conceals a small pipe organ.

child's Tipu's TigerOur version of Tipu’s Tiger is constructed from a large, plastic milk bottle, kitchen roll inners and plastic forks.  He’s held together with masking tape which is then coated with PVA and painted.  The man is similarly constructed from boxes, kitchen roll inners, squeezy lemon container and plastic spoons.  The project took so long because we had to paint the model multiple times and had to wait for the front to dry before painting the back.  There was also some inefficiency on my part with obtaining the necessary bits.

I’m linking up with this post to Kids Get Arty.





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