Taking a line for a walk

Paul Klee's Dream

The line is born. It begins to move. After a moment it stops. It wants to breathe. Then it looks backwards to see how far it has come. It is not sure which way to go: it starts several paths but keeps returning. There is a river in front of us. We must cross it. So we take a boat. There is a bridge further up the river. We go across a ploughed field, and then through a thick forest... we meet some basket makers on their way home. They are in a cart. They have a child with funny, curly hair. Later, the air becomes hot and damp. Night falls. There is a flash of lightning on the horizon, though the stars are still twinkling overhead.

How full of events our little journey is! The first part was happy, then came the difficulties. We were very nervous. We were frightened.. Before the storm, a cloud of flies attacked us. Anger and killing! Our good purpose is our guide, even in the woods and the darkness. The flash of lightning reminds us of the fever chart of a sick child.


Draw your version of Klee's dream.
Think about how a line or form can relay or evoke a narrative.
Now write a story and draw/make/weave/follow its line.
Alternatively make your line and then write its story.

Weaving Connections

How do we know about Paul Klee’s dream? Sitting in that classroom was a young student called Anni Albers, destined to become one of the most influential textile artists of her generation. Paul Klee's weaving course was one of only a few lessons open to girls at the Bauhaus School! Thanks to Anni we have a record of this episode in the classroom.

Anni Albers and her husband Josef emigrated to the USA where both taught at the famous Black Mountain Art School. Josef eventually became a professor at Yale University where one of his students was Sheila Hicks. Sheila would often come and see Anni to talk and for friendly advice. Revered today as an immense artist, she has always claimed her greatest inspiration was from Anni's work as a textile artist1.