Faith Ringgold’s Story Quilts

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Children will learn about artist Faith Ringgold as they create paper quilts inspired by her art.

By: Kristi Lane, San Antonio, TX. Images:

What You Need:

  • Watercolor, canvas or other heavy paper
  • Watercolors or other paint/brushes
  • Fabric scraps and paper scraps
  • Glue
  • Fine tip black marker

What You Do:

  1. Talk to your students about Faith Ringgold and if possible, share some of her work with your students.
  2. Explain that your students will be creating a mixed media creation inspired by the work of Faith Ringgold.
  3. Have students paint a scene from memory on the paper. This is how Faith Ringgold creates her images as well.
  4. They can then glue fabric or paper scraps as a “quilt” border.
  5. They can also use pictures from the fabric as part of the scene, i.e. if there is a bird in the fabric, they can cut it out and glue it in the sky or on a branch, etc.
  6. Encourage them to continue to work and add items and images to their creations.
  7. Display the finished work and discuss it.
  8. This could be worked into a writing lesson where students create a story around their art work.

About the Artist:

Faith Ringgold was born in Harlem in 1930. She received a degree in art education from the City College of New York and was an art teacher long before she became a professional artist. She is best known for her painted story quilts but also creates sculptures, mosaics, performance art and children’s books.


All images courtesy of Amy Brown and her students at Hemenway Elementary School. Visit Amy’s website – – to find all sorts of wonderful art lessons for K – 5th graders.

Amy also has a wonderful Power Point Presentation which you can download for help with this lesson plan.

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