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Children as Commissioners

Submitted by Education on Thu, 30/05/2019 - 12:19

As part of our continued work around pupil voice we have been working with Primary School Art Ambassadors alongside artists and designers to create new permanent artworks for their schools. Art Ambassadors or Art Councils are often a select group of children with a particular interest in creative subjects.

At Lansbury Lawrence Primary School Art Ambassadors from across Key Stage 1 and 2 have been working with design collective make:good to design and create an interactive artwork for the Reception and Year 1 children in their school.


The brief was to create something practical and playful that could be used for outdoor open-ended play and also be used for storage. The Art Ambassadors initially spent some time with Reception, carrying out audience research and finding out how they liked to play. They then made a series of prototypes to test their ideas out.

Make:good used the pupils’ designs as a starting point to create their first iteration of the product. The pupils reviewed make:good’s designs and once signed off, they visited their studio to find out more about what they do, see the progress of their product -  now named the Curiosity Cart -  and lend a hand with sanding and assembling the wooden pieces.


The finished piece was exhibited at the Poplar Celebration Event and now remains in the school where it can be moved between classroom and outdoor spaces and used by Early Years children for creative play.

Another Arts Council at St William of York Primary have been working with artist Jaimini Patel to create a permanent artwork for their school playground. The aim of the project was to improve the appearance of the school and provide an opportunity for the Year 6 pupils to leave a visible legacy when they move on to secondary school. The Arts Council, made up of pupils from each year group, created a brief for Jaimini to respond to in the design of the artwork.

The pupils decided the artwork should be: abstract, with complex or busy elements which invite different interpretations of different viewings; relate to the school and the local area; and be bold and signpost the school from the street.

Lead artist Jaimini Patel worked with Year 6 classes to create the content for the artwork which took visual references from maps of the local area, and shapes and colours pupils found around the school and surrounding area. The final design was digitally printed on dibond panels which were installed on a front fence of the school.

If you are interested in working with us to develop a commissions-based project for your school, please contact or 020 8980 7774.