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Movable Magnet Art inspired by artist Susan Point

You can use recycled bottle caps and a lid to create movable magnetic art, inspired by this carved and painted red cedar sculpture Salmon Spawning Run by artist Susan Point. The magnets can be arranged in different ways to form new works of art.

Susan Point (Canadian, Coast Salish, Musqueam First Nation, 1952–). Salmon Spawning Run, 2012, Western red cedar, paint. Project Ten Ten Ten commission. Museum Purchase: Funds provided by Fleur Bresler, Libba and Mike Gaither, Laura and Mike Grace, Betsy and Brian Wilder, Amy and Alfred Dawson, Aida and Greg Saul, Missy Luczak Smith and Doug Smith, Beth and Drew Quartapella, and Kim Blanding. 2012.107A-I. © Susan Point 2012
Susan Point (Canadian, Coast Salish, Musqueam First Nation, 1952–). Salmon Spawning Run, 2012, Western red cedar, paint. Project Ten Ten Ten commission. Museum Purchase: Funds provided by Fleur Bresler, Libba and Mike Gaither, Laura and Mike Grace, Betsy and Brian Wilder, Amy and Alfred Dawson, Aida and Greg Saul, Missy Luczak Smith and Doug Smith, Beth and Drew Quartapella, and Kim Blanding. 2012.107A-I. © Susan Point 2012

SUPPLIES:

• Bottle caps
• Mason jar or plastic recycled lid
• Colored paper
• 1” and 1/2” paper punch
• Small magnets
• Glue
• Scissors
• Pencil
• Newspaper or washable table covering

OPTIONAL SUPPLIES:

•Epoxy Resin (We used Art ‘N Glow Clear Casting Resin for the demo. It is BPA & VOC free, non-flammable, low odor, and non-toxic when used as directed.

Tip: A solid one-piece lid works best


Instructions:

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1. Decorate the bottle caps

Start by punching out both 1” and ½” paper circles from your colored paper. Use a dot of glue to attach the larger circle to the inside of the bottle cap. Put a dot of glue on the back of the smaller circle and place over top of the larger circle in the bottle cap. Don’t worry; it does not have to be perfectly centered!

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2. Design your centerpiece

Draw and cut out the shape of a fish. Use it to as a stencil to trace a second one on a different color paper. Cut out the second one. You can add eyes or gills if you want.

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3. Make your piece pop with a splash of color

If you would like to include a background color, use the lid to trace a circle. You will need to cut inside of your traced line to make the circle a little smaller than the lid itself so that it fits inside the rim. Glue the background circle to the lid. Arrange and glue the fish on top of the background.

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4. Fill the bottle caps with epoxy resin (optional)

Pour just enough epoxy liquid into the bottle cap and lid to completely cover the paper shapes being careful not to overfill. Let dry overnight. The epoxy will form a hard, glass-like coating.

Mix epoxy according to manufacturer’s directions. Be sure to work in a well-ventilated area with a table covering.

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5. Add the magnets

Once everything is dry, turn the bottle caps and lid over. Glue one magnet to the back of each and let dry.

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6. Assemble your work of art

Arrange the magnets on your refrigerator or other magnetic surface.

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7. Experiment by arranging magnets in different ways to create new designs


About the Artist:

Native to British Columbia, Washington and Oregon, the Coast Salish First Peoples consist of several groups with distinct languages but similar customs. Each group has a strong spiritual connection to the land and water of the Pacific Northwest, which has provided their livelihood for thousands of years. Artist Susan Point’s knowledge of the style and meaning behind the imagery allows her to honor the traditions of her ancestors while expanding on the designs in a contemporary way. The red cedar roundel Salmon Spawning Run features carved and painted salmon and clusters of eggs. The vibrant eggs complete the fish’s lifecycle, as the renewal of wild salmon (still caught using traditional methods) is critical to keeping Mother Earth in balance.

Learn More:

Susan Point’s website: https://susanpoint.com/

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This idea brought to you by Maggie Burgan

The Mint Museum From Home is Presented By Chase.