Summer Art Challenge: Pointillism Eiffel Tower

For many people, things like art and music seem like they are the opposite to math and science. However, one meeting with French artist Georges Seurat, and you will see that math & science can be foundational to art and creativity! To understand this, let’s take a look at one of Seurat’s most iconic paintings, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte‘.

What do you notice about the painting above? You can see that the colors have a softer feel, and though the overall work looks clean and neatly outlined, there is a lot of depth in terms of color and shade. This is because of the painting technique – pointillism. In pointillism, tiny dots of color are put together on canvas, repeatedly, till it fills in an entire area. So rather than the painter mixing up these dots of paint, your brain mixes it up so your eyes see it as a single picture rather than a combination of dots. You could say that the painting has an almost ‘pixelated’ feel to it! 

All this sounds quite scientific, and that’s because it is! Seurat went through scientists’ writings on color theory, and how the human eye views colors. After lots of study, he realized that one could use colors by understanding them scientifically, and this led to the creation of Chromoluminarism and the Divisionism Movement in art. 

For today's Art Challenge we would love for you to give this a try with watercolors or any paints, paper and a Q-Tip. Below we have an example of a pointillism painting done of the Eiffel Tower. Georges Seurat was a French artist and his mother was a Parisienne, so it’s seems fitting to paint the Eiffel Tower! Pick out your colors and instead of applying the paint with a brush you will form the shape of the Eiffel Tower with dots of paint made by dipping your Q-Tip in the paint and then stamping the paper. Give it a try, have some fun and dream of a summer trip away in Paris!

We would love to see your work! Please send us a photograph of your Eiffel Tower by Sunday, July 26th to our email at and we will share your work with our MCAC community. 

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