Tate Kids



Angel face

Tate Modern

The Idea

Eileen Agar was a Surrealist artist who also worked in 3D with a variety of materials like the plaster, textiles and feathers she used to create the Angel of Anarchy. Surrealism is a movement which began in the 1920s in both visual art and writing. In Surrealism the artist works with unexpected and often fantastic visual images that do not necessarily make sense to the viewer.

Eileen Agar Angel of Anarchy 1936-40, Textiles over plaster and mixed media object: 520 x 317 x 336 mm sculpture © The Estate of Eileen Agar


The Plan

Can you imagine an angel? Can you create it with its own character using different and interesting materials? You are going to create your own angel by building the basic head and then adding to it in a way that is special to you.


You Need

Something suitable to make the head and neck "base":"
  • Either a balloon and yoghurt container (for the neck) or
  • A plaster-cast face mould and Plaster of Paris.
  • A variety of materials of your choice: textiles, feathers, jewellery, beads, thread etc.
  • Adhesive, pins, scissors, stapler etc.

Do it!

  • If you are using plaster, pour it into the face mould and leave it until it has set rock hard.
  • When set turn it carefully out of the mould.
  • If you are using a balloon and yoghurt pot pull the knotted end of the balloon through a hold in the top of the pot.
  • Now build up your sculpture with several different layers of materials being as imaginative as you like.
  • Give your angel a name and introduce him/her to your friends.

Top Tips

  • Before you start, look carefully at the angel Eileen created.
  • Why do you think she chose the materials she has used?
  • If this angel came to life what sort of angel would s/he be? Kind, funny, angry maybe naughty?
  • What would the angel say, what would its voice sound like?
  • Now think carefully about the sort of angel you want to create.
  • Think about these same things as you choose the materials you will use.

Can you help us? We need your images! E-mail your images to kids@tate.org.uk and we will add it to Tate Create.