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Talking Pictures Week 29: Snake Charmer

Athendoros - Laocoon and his Sons

Talking Pictures for Children 

Talking Pictures is an online resource for children and their adults based on artwork from the Crawford Art Gallery Collection. We will share creative prompts for happy talk and play every Wednesday.

When you arrive into the Crawford Gallery you will see a whole room full of sculptures on your left. This is where Laocoön lives. Most of the statues in this room were made in Rome under the guidance of a very talented sculptor called Antonio Canova. They are over 200 years old, but they are copies of sculptures that were created long before that. We can visit them in our local gallery instead of traveling all the way to Italy!

About the artwork:

This artwork tells a story. In Greek mythology, Laocoön was a priest who was attacked by giant serpents sent by the Gods. The two boys with him are his two sons. A very long snake is just about to bite Laocoön on his hip! The sculpture gives us many different views of this story. We can look from the side or from the back and see something new. 


Snakes make some people uncomfortable. Is it their lack of arms and legs? Their scaly skin? Their glassy eyes? 

What do you think about snakes? 

This snake has a very silky fringe which she slathers in coconut oil every week.


Did you know snakes had legs for the first 70 million years of their existence? What kind of legs do you think a snake would have? Why don’t you have a go at drawing some snakes with human features to see how it changes their character. 

Try adding a hand, an eye, a moustache, legs...

arms, legs, eye, moustache

Sssslithery Sssslippery Ssssnake Facts

Only 6 countries in the world don’t have any snakes and Ireland is one of them!  

Snakes in captivity can live up to 170 years, while wild snakes can live to be 100.

Snakes lay eggs.

Snakes can digest everything but hair claws and feathers. 

Snake Charmer 

Now that we have found out more about our snake friends let’s make a 3D snake charm to hang in your home. 

You will need: paper, scissors, a piece of string and drawing materials of your choice.

First, draw a spiral in a snake shape like this...

Snake template

Colour your snake….

Next carefully cut out your snake with a scissors. 

Once this is done make a small hole in the very end of your snake and pull the string through. 

Tie the string in tight knots so it does not slip back through the hole. 

Now your snake is free to hang up in your home!

Have a sssssuper day!

Talking Pictures: Snake Charmer was devised by Annie Forrester 

We would love to hear your stories and artworks inspired by Talking Pictures! 

Share them with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter using the #crawfordartgalleryhomelife.

You can download an Irish language pdf version of this article here.

Please share:

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T12 TNE6
Tel: 021 480 5042

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