Ellsworth Kelly Desk Organizers #MuseumatHome #TryThis

Akron Art Museum
3 min readMar 23, 2020

This is not only a chance to spruce things up in the home office, but also get organized. Many of us have impulse buys sitting around; good ideas never put to use. Those banal pieces of office equipment are easily improved.

For this project, we’re taking American painter and printmaker Ellsworth Kelly as our inspiration. Kelly’s abstract works often feature pared-down forms and colors. Akron Art Museum’s lithograph, for example, includes only green and black. Kelly’s paintings featured uniform expanses of color on shaped canvases.


Colored Paper
Base Object(s)

This project is just as easy to adorn any surface in the office that needs color and style.

  1. Find your base, like these bookstops.

2. Look for colored paper. This paper has a sticky back, but you can use a glue stick to affix the paper to your surface. Go online to the Akron Art Museum’s collection, as well as other notable collections, to explore the work of Ellsworth Kelly. The Art Institute of Chicago and the Metropolitan Museum of Art have some nice examples. Once you have a good handle on the ways Kelly plays with shape, cut your own.

3. Affix your shapes to the base. Kelly was notable for the smooth polished surface of his paintings, so try to keep your paper smooth.

#TryThis is made possible with support from PNC, the Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation, the Alan and Janice Woll Family Fund, OMNOVA Solutions Foundation, Peg’s Foundation, Robert O. and Annamae Orr Family Foundation, Kathy Moses Salem Philanthropic Fund of the Akron Community Foundation, Charles E. and Mabel M. Richie Foundation and Mr. and Mrs. William H. Considine