Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Clay Creatures

Each Monday over the past three weeks, 20-21 have been delighted hosts of Henderson Avenue Primary School's  year two classes!

The pupils came along to make clay sculptures, but before getting our hands mucky, we studied tabletop sculptures and their properties, as well as discussing how they might have been made.

Children got the rare chance to handle the artwork, touching what the sculptures felt like and discussing how we think the artist made them.

The classes are studying endangered animals at school, and were lucky enough to visit our All Things Bright and Beautiful exhibition, which features some endangered creatures.

After visiting the artworks and talking about them, the pupils were asked to draw a chosen endangered animal, keeping in mind that they'd be expected to make the drawing into a 3D model. 

Once the sketches were complete, we all played with our clay, softening it and understanding it's properties. We were using lots of different tools, to create interesting marks and shapes.  

All of the models were very creative and interesting to look at. They have spent quite some time in the gallery spaces drying out. We are becoming really rather attached to some of them!

Some of the classes were so good at sculpting, that we had some time to go and visit the main exhibitions in the church spaces.

"Winter Wonderland" in the Chancel Gallery. Some schools and young people have contributed trees and decorations to our very festive exhibition.

"Open 2012" in the Nave Gallery, a beautiful setting for an exhibition of local artists' work
Children walked around all our exhibitions and were asked to choose their favourite piece of work and explain why they liked it, and what they thought it was about.

 One young man chose Irene McGrath's "Allium" and explained: "The metal ball is for Dr Fake, who has died and this is his life source, and it's in the church because it's being protected"
Another young girl liked this piece, also, telling us: "This has been an explosion in space and the big ball is holding onto the exploded bits, which are the little balls."

A pupil chose Jon Cocks' "Facebox", as their favourite artwork: "This piece has nails in and you weave your gold thread around the nails in a way around the faces and when you find the funniest one, you stop there and fire comes out"

Children were asked to look aorund at the architecture of the building and think about the fact that it used to be a church. Here are some comments on the building, and it's previous uses (they cheered our day up, here at 20-21!):
"The altar is where they put the babies what have already been christened, to let them dry off"
"The rose window was where angels used to sit, one on each side, to look after all the children."
"I can't find god"

"My favourite thing, is that there!" (pointing at a fire detector)

All in all, each of the workshops with Henderson Avenue Primary School, were very productive, creative and exciting. The children are currently working on their posts for this blog... keep an eye out for us uploading them in the next few weeks! Thank you to all the teachers and pupils who gave us such a treat by visiting us here at 20-21!