Work with Primary Schools, Roman Signer Exhibition
The Fruitmarket Gallery organised a series of free art workshops for Primary Schools to coincide with the Roman Signer exhibition over a fortnight in January 2008. 10 local schools visited and undertook a two and a half hour artist led workshop in the gallery space responding to the exhibition. The pupils approached Roman Signer’s films and sculptural experiments through the scientific investigation of energy creation and transfer, allowing them the opportunities to develop their understanding of actions and reactions in terms of art and science. The pupils then worked with visual artist Dave Sherry (sculpture) and Jenna Watt (performance) on creative activities which made links across the curriculum, contributed towards the four underlying aims of the new Curriculum for Excellence and expand the pupils’ understanding of creative energy! In total 222 school pupils from 10 P5 – P7 classes attended over the fortnight. Places were allocated to the schools with the highest allocation of free school meals, with a third of the schools coming from the 10% most in need in Edinburgh. “The pupils got a better understanding of art in its different forms. There is a big focus on science in primary schools at the moment so this was a fantastic project”. Primary school teacher In addition pupils from Royal Mile Primary School worked with artist Dave Sherry over a further two months back in school, making artworks, and a short film entitled Royal Mile Airshow.
Work with Secondary Schools, East Lothian Council Portfolio Gourp
Secondary art pupils from across East Lothian took part in regular portfolio preparation classes, organised by the local authority’s Cultural Co-ordinator as an aid to preparing their applications to art coillege. As part of the course, The Fruitmarket Gallery collaborated with the Cultural Co-ordinator to devise a programme of experimental drawing activity over a fortnight.
Artisit Alice Betts led an in-house workshop with 14 your people which aimed to broaden their understanding of drawing and its uses. The young people investigated Roman Signer’s films and sculptural experiments through drawing diagrammatically. In doing so they were tasked to concentrate less on form but more on the process: how and why things moved.
The following week, Alice led activity which further progresses and challenged the young people’s ideas on what drawing might be, encouraging them to experiment and accept failure as a necessary part of the creative process, which drives them towards the unexpected.
“I hoped that the young people would use the experience to look at what contemporary art is, and try and understand where the artist is coming from. It was great to work with the artist as well as she made them approach drawing in a very different and challenging way.” Cultural Co-ordinator