Art classes

at the Pavé d’Orsay, in English

Cours d’art au Pavé d’Orsay

Les cours seront dispensés en anglais mais les deux enseignants comprennent le français.
Une occasion de peaufiner votre anglais tout en suivant des cours d’art !

Friendly small classes catering for all levels which will help you gain the skills and confidence for making dynamic artistic work. Beginners welcome.

Learn from artists with years of experience in both making art and in teaching technique, process, and ways of seeing.

This is for you if:

  • You wish you could draw things as you see them.
  • You love colour and want to be able to mix any colour you see
  • You have always wanted to paint the figure, portraits or hands but didn’t know how to begin.
  • You find abstract art fascinating and would like to learn the thinking behind it.
  • You’d like to experiment with and learn how to use different materials.
  • You want to be inspired by the architecture and ambience of Paris.
  • You wish you could visit museums with someone who can explain things to you.
  • You love the idea of a creative moment in the centre of Paris down the street from the Musée D’Orsay and across the river from the Musée du Louvre.

Former participants’ comments:

Welcoming | Well-paced | Calm | Relaxed | Open Non-judgmental | Great teachers

Bite sized entry level learning of techniques

A space to encourage and unlock your own potential



Towards Figuration through Drawing
Proportions and structure of the face / volume and form through line / expression and emotion through observation and distortion / anatomy- bone and muscle structure / negative space and foreshortening / responding to movement and dance
3 sessions – 1, 8, 15 October  19h30 – 22h

Towards Figuration through Oil Painting
Mixing skin tones / colour matching techniques / complimentary colour theory / looking at painted skin throughout art history / tone, light, shadow, warm and cool shades / properties of paint and mediums/ brushes and paint application / preparing painting surface
3 sessions – 26 November, 3, 10 December   19h30 – 22h


Towards Abstraction through Colour
Communicating through colour / colour theory / mixing colour /colour recipes / colour relationships / creating colour chords / making colour compositions
3 sessions 2, 9, 16 October   9h30 – 12h

Towards Abstraction through Form
Ways of Looking / shape / contour / negative space/ figure and ground / light and dark / depth v flatness.  Finding the essence : Identification /reduction / simplification / selection.  Elements and principles of design
3 sessions 6, 13, 20 November    9h30 – 12h

Towards Abstraction through Process
Letting material speak / mark making techniques / building an image / spontaneity and intuition / action and reaction / addition and subtraction as process / gesture / geometry / working in series.
3 sessions – 27 November, 4, 11 December   9h30 – 12h

Each subsection of the course contains 3 x 2h30 sessions. Students can opt to take individual classes.
35€ per session.
Art materials are included.

October 30th & 31st – details to follow


Clare Thackway has worked in Sydney in contemporary art education and public programs in the museum sector with specific focus on working with people with dementia, mental health and disability. She has also run art education programs for children and families, corporate groups and team building experiences. She has worked at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Casula Power-House Arts Centre and Wollongong Art Gallery in Australia and has taught portraiture and figurative painting workshops at the Australian National University and the University of Wollongong.

Clare holds a Bachelor of Visual Arts from the Australian National University and in 2006 she graduated from the National Art School Sydney with Honours in Fine Art Painting. She has held solo exhibitions and group exhibitions in galleries throughout Australia and has been a finalist in several national Australian art prizes. In 2019 she relocated to Paris and has an atelier in Ivry-sur-Seine.

Richard van der Aa studied painting at Canterbury University, Christchurch, New Zealand, before moving to Australia, where he completed a Master of Fine Arts at COFA (University of NSW). He was Faculty Head of Visual Arts at the School of Creative Arts, Oxford Falls, Sydney, 1998-2004 and after moving to Paris, he and his wife Anna established the ParisCONCRET association for the dissemination of reductive abstract art. Richard continues to teach and has been an exhibiting artist since 1985. His work has been exhibited extensively in Australia and New Zealand, in the Netherlands, France, Germany, Poland, the UK and the USA

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