We worked with Year 7 to 10 students from Swanlea School in June 2018 to deliver artist-led masterclasses as part of the wider school Arts Week. The workshops took place at both the school and Bow Arts’ RAW Labs at Gallions Reach.
I learnt that the site specific sculptures are incomplete without a certain place.
Year 8 student
The lead artists were challenged to introduce their own practice as a whole, highlighting the motivations and processes running throughout. Each of the seven artists worked with 150 young people across the week – guiding them through activities linked to their work, and encouraging them to take a collaborative, professional approach to their making.
The students experienced debating, working as a team and found an appreciation of what art is.
Across the week, the school was transformed into a beacon of creative activity, with classrooms acting as studio spaces for a wide range of meaningful enquiries and playful experimentation.
Ania Bas introduced performance and conceptual art, demonstrating how these techniques could be used to explore important issues such as gender and identity. Jojo Hynes discussed issues that will affect future London, working to create slogans/narratives to tackle social concerns such as the environment or urban housing. Poppy Green explored making through play – looking at destruction, intuition, opposition and limitation as useful strategies for making.
Students also developed new artistic skills focusing on large-scale installations and paper sculpture with Carl Stevenson, printmaking and ceramics with Eva Lerche-Lerchenborg, photography, collage and still-life creation with Katherine Leedale and casting and mould-making with Maisie Maris.
Students had never done these printing processes before, it was useful for them to learn how to translate drawing into print.
Eva Lerche-Lerchenborg, Lead Artist
Some pupils who do not usually enjoy art showed some amazing drawing skills.
If you are interested in running an Arts Week at your school, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 8980 7774