Traveling Artist Wagon

How do you fit the story of 36 years of teaching art into a 
6-1/2" tall x 5-1/2" long x 3" wide capsule of a container?   
Easy.  You just make a little gypsy wagon and outfit it with some details to express a few highlights of the journey.  This began with a kit, laser-cut from heavy chipboard. I will include a link at the end. 

First, I had to decide what to include and how to display it.  No matter what goes inside, it becomes pointless if there is no way to see it.  From the beginning I wanted one wall to be removable for this purpose.  This meant I would have to work out a way to slide it back into place when the wagon needed to be whole again.  At this point I decided that the roof would also be removable. 

​​I chose to make a countertop along the stationary wall with some built in shelves.  The supplies consists of a hefty stack of paper, a gallon of glue, and paint. Imaginary goodies hide inside the faux drawers. Tiny paper clay pots "dry" on the shelves, and the paint brushes stand in a jar on the counter. An artist apron, bespattered with paint, hangs near the door and a towel hangs over the counter- near where all the action takes place.   I also used one of the window holes for a small built-in shelf for "paint jars". 

The window on the end would become a pupper theater. I used paper clay to make a little cat head for a "hand" pupper (which barely fits the tip of my finger).  When the puppet is not in use, it rests on a post-stand affixed in the corner.

From the outside, the stage is topped with a metal filigree valance with chain "curtain" dangles,  and below the stage platform- laser cut chipboard lace patterned pieces appear to hold up the stage. 

In order to provide classes, I would need a table and seating.  There was no room inside the wagon for a table so I made a fold-down one that could be used when the wall is removed.  Stools provide seating for both the table and the work counter.  

Next, I made a folding display stand for student art exhibits and a folding class schedule sign which doubles on the back as an easel.

The art in the exhibit and on the inside of the door is actual photos of student art from the countless creations I have been privileged to witness through the years. 

When the classes are over and everyone is gone, the stools and ladder can go inside the wagon; the table is folded up and latched into place; and all the rest is buckled up into a bundle to go inside the roof for traveling to the next town. Velcro strips holds the bundle in place. 

The lattace-like work at the top of the walls help to hold the roof into place while traveling. 

And if I am going to have an imaginary journey back into time, I will definately take a little bit of garden with me. The flower box is made of bamboo forks (toothpick type things). 

What a sweet way to look back and remember a wonder-filled journey bringing the arts to others.