Categories
Mobilise! Mobilise!

Mobilise! Mobilise! exhibition now on

‘Mobilise! Mobilise! The Firefighters of Holloway’ highlights the unique perspective of Islington artist Niki Gibbs.

A local fire station is a building that we often walk past but only perhaps become aware of when a big red fire truck emerges to deal with an urgent situation. Little is known about the training, daily checks, maintenance of kit, inspections of buildings in the community, and other outreach work performed by the firefighters.

White Watch, by Niki Gibbs, on display in the ‘Mobilise! Mobilise!’ exhibition.

Drawing inspiration from photographs, Niki Gibbs worked with Holloway Fire Station on Hornsey Road, Islington, to capture its four crews going about their routine daily work. ‘Mobilise! Mobilise!’ art exhibition is the result of this intimate and insightful collaboration.

Mobilise! Mobilise! is on at Islington Museum from 1 February – 31st March 2020.

For more details, visit the website or call 020 7527 2837.

The exhibition free events programme can be found here.

Categories
Events

Art and Local History: create and explore with Islington Museum’s new class!

Bunhill Ward Event Page image

Local History and Art Class – 12.30-15.30 at Islington Museum. 

Saturday 20th May 2017

Saturday 10th June 2017

Saturday 8th July 2017

Unearth amazing local stories, explore archival material and make art in our relaxed and friendly new classes.

Re-discover what makes this fascinating pocket of London so special, learn new skills and make friends over tea and cake.

No artistic experience is needed. These will be relaxed and informal sessions, with ample opportunities to make new friends from your local community. Sign up here.

These monthly classes are offered in partnership with the Local Initiatives Fund from Bunhill Ward.

If you have any questions please email rebecca.campbell-gay@islington.gov.uk or call Islington Museum on 020 7527 7988. 

Categories
Blog Post Education

Inspired by Peter Yates: St John Highbury Vale and Gillespie

Day and Night Winged Bulls: an exploration of community by pupils from St John Highbury Vale Church of England Primary School and Gillespie Primary Schoo

In spring 2016 artist Ella Medley-Whitfield and Islington Museum worked with pupils from year 4 at St John Highbury Vale Church of England Primary School and year 3 at Gillespie Primary School on an art project inspired by Day and Night, Winged Bulls by Peter Yates (1920-1982). It was a chance for pupils from different schools to make new friends, share ideas and be creative together.

I liked the opportunity to make friends with Gillespie by working with them.’ Zac

‘I think the children from Gillespie were nervous by we did well at getting to know each other.’ Eddie

‘I enjoyed talking to my partner about what it was like in his school.’ Benji L

 

‘If you look closely at the mural you can see: St Paul’s Cathedral, dolphins, a flying bull, and sword, a well and a path.’ Thalia

Yates REstored

Bevin Court is a grade II* listed housing scheme built by famous Modernist architect Berthold Lubetkin. Peter Yates was invited to paint a mural in the foyer reflecting the local area. He painted a bold abstract mural using themes from the Finsbury coat of arms. Since 2014 Islington Museum, with funding from  the Heritage Lottery Fund has been conserving and restoring this famous mural to its original splendour. Find out more about the mural and Bevin Court on the project website.

IMG_3415

Working together, pupils from St John and Gillespie explored the mural, looking at the different symbols and discussing what they thought they meant. They were particularly fascinated by the image of the dolphin and St Paul’s cathedral. Pupils then began to think about their local area, the buildings, spaces and communities that are important to them. They debated what images they would choose to represent their schools, as well as their shared identity as part of the local community.

‘I worked very well Ahmed. I was good at drawing and he was good at cutting. We made a perfect team. I loved the idea of the art project with Gillespie.’ Krishna

‘We combined the St John’s and Gillespie symbols together to make our picture. We fitted in as many different flags as we could to show that everyone is equal no matter which city or country you are from.’ Poppy

 ‘If you look closely at our banner you can see that it has landmarks such as the Emirates Stadium. There are also symbols like the London Underground sign.’ Niamh

Pupils from the two schools were paired to create these collaborative images. Once they had agreed on their designs, they drew the images on to lino. Using lino cutters, they had the challenging task of then cutting out their designs. It took a lot of perseverance!

I was most proud of my partner because he tried really hard with the lino tool.’ Eliza

The lino cutters were very difficult to use because they hurt your hands but the hard work paid off because the prints look wonderful.’ Phoebe

‘I learned how to use a lino tool. It was fun although it was really difficult because the lino was so strong.’ Martha

 

Then the really fun bit happened, as pupils used printing ink to print their lino block on to fabric. Each pair printed two fabric artworks, one for the St John banner, and one for Gillespie. The fabric pieces were finally sewn together by pupils to create the two textile banner.

 ‘I found the printing challenging, but I love challenges!’ Eddie

‘I felt very proud when I saw my print because it looked excellent.’ Milo

IMG_3474.jpg

The final banners were displayed at Islington Museum in June 2016, alongside photos of the project.

Look at the banner to explore what is important to our pupils. Join us in celebrating our shared identity as part of the same local community.

image11

What we thought about the project:

‘I noticed that Gillespie call their teachers by their first name instead of their surname.’ Ruby

 ‘I really enjoyed working with Alice. It was fun to meet her.’ Cali

 ‘I enjoyed working with my new friend, Lucy. She had really good ideas.’ Thalia

 ‘I worked with Maya. She has loads of good ideas. It was good because they didn’t just talk to their friends, they let you join into their chats.’ Polly

 ‘I enjoyed working with my partner because he was really kind and we made friends really quickly.’ Benjy P

‘I am most proud of learning how to use lino because it is a fun skill. I also learned to sew!’ Benji L

 ‘I enjoyed using the lino cutters because I have never used them before.’ Precious

‘It was very funny when my partner Michael got yellow paint on his nose.’ Leyla

 ‘It was really funny when I got orange paint all over my face!’ Martha

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Categories
Blog Post Education Imagine Islington

Inspired by WWII embroidered postcards: Sarah Pimenta and Morelands Primary School

In 2016 artist Sarah Pimenta worked with teacher Louise Murtagh and Year 1 at Morelands Primary School on the exhibition Imagine Islington. Sarah supported Louise to design and deliver a 5 workshop programme for the classroom, inspired by the collection of embroidered postcards from the Second World War.

Sarah also worked alongside the pupils in their classroom to create her own new artwork inspired by the postcards and the pupils.

IMG_2083

Why we chose the embroidered postcards:

‘We chose the postcards to fit into a topic the class were already covering and also because of the story of Leonard & Margaret. We thought the idea that Margaret had kept the postcards from Leonard so safe for so many years was a lovely message about treasuring and valuing things given to us by people we love.

 The simple designs of the postcards depicting images from France and England was also an interesting point to start thinking about heritage and identity visually.

 We also thought the postcards would tie in with an upcoming topic our class would will be doing called ‘Hurrah for the holiday’s. We thought it would be interesting for the children to explore the idea of why people send postcards and who people choose to send those postcards to.’

Louise

 Our artwork:

Year 1 created an installation piece inspired by Leonard’s postcards. The installation combine screen prints and a sculptural mobile.

Hung on the wooden frame were wooden postcards printed with the pupils’ designs exploring their cultural identity. The images referenced those on the postcards sent by Leonard.

final work 10.jpg

 

Alongside the mobile were three screen printed artworks. Sarah worked with the pupils to create these screen prints from their drawings. Sarah cut out the pupils’ drawings to create stencils, which she then composed on the screen. The pupils screen printed these stencils onto a fabric background. Once dry, Sarah added a different colour wash, chosen by the pupils, to the three works. The final collaborative artwork expresses the vibrant cultural backgrounds of the class.

final work 4final work 3final work 2

Sarah worked alongside the pupils to create her own artwork inspired by the embroidered postcards. She explored her own cultural links to Goa and Kenya. She collected objects from both countries, including images, postcards, stamps, adverts and even shopping bags.

‘I decided to focus on print methods that I don’t normally use in my practise, I chose to do lino cutting as I thought it was a technique which was better suited to working within a classroom setting. It awakened a love for lino printing that I hadn’t felt for a long time ( I first did it over 20 years before as an art student). As part of my own work, I printed my blocks in a Print studio on a professional press & had the chance to experiment a bit and learn some new processes including chine-collee which inspired me in my classroom delivery .  I learnt that despite being a printer there is always something new to learn & the importance of experimenting.  I am definitely going to continue to learn more and develop even more techniques! I’ve a feeling that it’s the beginning of a new creative journey, I definitely intend to continue with my experiments.’

 

Sarah

Dad’s Flamingo

Sarah’s dad when living in Nairobi, was given a flamengo as a pet by one of his students. Sarah referenced this unusual pet in a lino and chine-collee print inspired by her cultural heritage. The pose of the flamengo is taken from her father’s photograph, while the background text is from a piece of newsprint collected from Kenya.

‘I loved the idea of exploring the concept of cherishing something that had been sent by a loved one far away.  The story of postcards being sent between countries by loved ones is a theme from my own migrant history, messages flying across the worlds from Kenya in Africa & Goa in India to England –  some probably during the same time frame as when Leonard was sending cards to Margaret. I’m  pleased to have finally made some work which explores my heritage.

By some serendipity at the beginning of this project two people dear to me travelled to Kenya & Goa.  I explained the project to them & they both agreed to send me stuff from their travels; postcards, bits of fabric, scraps of paper, money etc which I could use a impetus for my artwork.   I decided to make some simple lino prints using imagery and ideas from this collection of well travelled inspiration with a view to gifting a print back to Lucy & Ruth to complete the cycle of giving & receiving.’

Sarah

KENYA Ruth

 

Kenya Ruth uses chine-collee to incorporate the ephemeral brought back by Ruth from Kenya.

final work 6

Dahlia string

Dahlia string, feathers and coins from Kenya are relief printed on to fabric, the dye from the string merging with the ink.

final work 7

GOA Lucy

Mirroring the techniques used by the pupils and referencing the visual language of the WWI postcards, Sarah combine layers of lino prints and chine-collee.

final work 5

 

What we thought about the project:

‘It was a pleasure to see the pupils responses to the artwork they had created themselves and see their enjoyment in the printmaking process which was their first attempt at this type of arts activity.  They were also very receptive to my work & were full of questions!’

Sarah

‘I learned that it is possible to use a historical object and turn it into a really interesting art project. I liked the idea of making it personal for the children so they felt connected to their work and could see the importance of why Margaret kept the postcards safe. The children enjoyed talking about their family and what they know of the countries in which their family live.

It was important not to limit the children’s interpretation of what our idea was important too. The outcome was not what I had imagined but the results were personal and have a story to them and so I think they are real works of art as they have so much thought in them.

Through observing Sarah, the children were able to see a range of ways to design and print work and also to see how a professional artist works and the amount of time and skill that is required. They could see the importance of thinking and improving your work.’

Louise

Categories
Blog Post Education Imagine Islington

Inspired by 53 Cross Street: Ella Medley-Whitfield and Montem Primary School

In 2016 artist Ella Medley-Whitfield worked with teacher Ed and Year 1 at Montem School on the exhibition Imagine Islington. Ella supported Ed Musgrave to design and deliver a 5 workshop programme for the classroom, inspired by the collection from 53 Cross Street.

Ella also worked alongside the pupils in their classroom to create her own new artwork inspired by 53 Cross Street and the class.

Why we chose 53 Cross Street:

‘I am drawn to objects or remnants left behind that can tell a story or have a narrative. I realised that these objects would be food for children’s imagination, they understood the historical aspects and were able to think imaginatively about how the objects had arrived at the house and the museum and who they had once belonged to. All three objects were things that had once been worn by a person and the fact that the shoes had come from the Victorian times gave the children a real historical idea about how long ago this was. This aspect fitted into the curriculum as the group had previously done some work on Victorian times and had some background knowledge for us to develop.

 The objects inspired many art ideas for me and the group as it was easily transferable to look at lost objects in the children’s school situation, it is a Victorian school so lent itself well to thinking about the schools history and things at school we could preserve. We particularly looked at the school’s lost property, which I think was a very successful approach as it made the children think about things they overlook everyday.’

Artist

Our artwork:

Ella collaborated with the pupils to create the Museum of Lost Objects, an installation piece.

The installation contained sculptures of lost objects created by the pupils, and installed on an old school display board. These were presented alongside a framed installation of object labels, that identified the sculptures. Referencing the unique history of the Cross Street artefacts, pupils’ lost objects are similarly elevated to museum pieces.

‘I view my practice as relational and socially engaged, I work with people to collect stories and accounts. I believe it is my responsibility as an artist to retell these stories or accounts creatively for an audience. For this project I was concerned with collecting stories and information from the children. I devised a museum of lost objects, the students recreated in clay objects that they had either lost or misplaced that they really miss. By remaking these objects, they were preserving the memory, so it almost became an object graveyard. I used these clay pieces to incorporate old lost objects taken from the school, taking ownership over the way they were presented and narrated for an audience.’

Ella

Alongside the Museum of Lost Objects  is a sculptural installation. Pupils created plaster of paris bricks. Peaking out from inside the bricks are found objects, which pupils salvaged from their playground. Lost property has been cast in to the fabric of the bricks, hidden from view but preserved for prosperity, again referencing the history of the Cross Street collection. The bricks are presented within a perspex box.

FINAL WORK 3

What we thought about the project:

‘Each week, Ella used different artistic media for the children to use and respond to the artefacts, they created some fantastic artwork which encompassed skills of sculpture, drawing and painting. Resources including plaster, sculpting wire and photography were used effectively and were well above the calibre of normal art materials the children use at school.

Having a full-time artist in class exposed children to the idea of pursuing a career in Art in the future.

Ed

‘I have worked with objects for many years and really enjoyed this experience to develop my practice with objects. I had never worked with objects taken from a museums collection. It made me think about the historical context of the object more and made me feel more responsible to responding to this object correctly as I didn’t want to get my facts wrong. I also really enjoyed the process of devising creative interactive and educational activities around a single object, this was a challenge but a very positive challenge with many avenues to explore.’

Ella

unnamed

 

Categories
Blog Post Collections Education Imagine Islington

Installations inspired by Joe Orton’s Book Covers: Ella Phillips and Vittoria Primary School

Picture15.jpg

In 2016 artist Ella Phillips worked with teacher Helen Roberts and Year 4 at Vittoria Primary School on the exhibition Imagine Islington. Ella supported Helen to design and deliver a 5 workshop programme for the classroom, inspired by the Joe Orton book covers held by Islington Museum.

Ella also worked alongside the pupils in their classroom to create her own new artwork inspired by the book covers and the pupils.

Why we chose the book covers:

‘As an artist, I often work digitally and found the materiality of the objects appealing.

I was interested in how different places invoke certain behaviours and how Orton & Halliwell chose to subvert this within the library space. I wanted to create a connection between their history and contemporary culture, through playing with the idea of ‘hacking as a method of cutting and technological subversion. What does changing an image or text with your own ideas, say about ownership and personal agency? Collage offered an effective way to explore this, with children of all abilities able to make impacting images quickly.

Ella

 Our artwork:

Pupils created an installation, Library: Hacked:

Each student created ‘hacked’ text, book jacket covers and concertina books. These were put together alongside their ‘spliced portraits’ to create a topsy-turvy library.

Bringing together all of these elements, the class created a library installation with our own ridiculous rules to help you understand how to behave! Look around and you might see our spliced portraits, but nothing is as it seems in the ‘Library: Hacked’.

Ella

final work 1

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Ella created While Reading 

This installation was composed of a hand carved book, created from a hacked library text with a video nestled inside. From the book was a pair of headphones playing a video. Sense and nonsense, everybody is welcome!

Ella Phillips_While Reading, video installation, 2016

 

 unnamed

Categories
Blog Post Education Imagine Islington

Art inspired by nature: Sarah Pimenta and Blessed Sacrament RC Primary School

IMG_1708

In 2016 artist Sarah Pimenta  worked with teacher Denise Quinn and Year 2 at Blessed Sacrament School on the exhibition Imagine Islington. Sarah supported Denise to design and deliver a 5 workshop programme for the classroom, inspired by Islington Museum’s historic wooden water pipe.

Sarah also worked alongside the pupils in their classroom to create her own new artwork inspired by the water pipe and the pupils.

Why we chose the wooden water pipe:

‘We choose this object to tie in with the artist Andy Goldsworth and use his inspiration from natural forms. Trees are a large part of the natural environment in Islington and it was a good way to encourage appreciation of nature in the local area. I wanted to get the children outside the classroom despite curriculum restraints and SAT’S looming. It encouraged them to make interdisciplinary links and enabled the children to produce inspirational and creative artwork alongside developing their vocabulary. The children have applied their terminology in their writing.’ 

Denise

Our artwork:

Blessed Sacrament’s artworks

The pupils created an installation art piece combined a collaborative mixed media leaf collage, individual rainmakers and a collaborative screen printed hanging.

The collage was created from mono printed leaves, rubbings and poly tile blocks, the different colours and textures combining to create a natural canopy. Moving from this visual display the rain makers referenced the sound of water travelling through the historic water log. The rainmakers were decorated in marks created by the pupils in response to sounds of water.

final artworks 2.JPG

Sarah worked alongside the class to collaborate on a printed banner, working with small groups each workshop to experiment with different printing techniques.

Analogue mark-making

Pupils listened to  audio clips of rain, flowing water, rivers, storms and the sea. They worked on sheets of acetate covered with ink, using their fingers and other mark making tools to draw what they heard and imagined. Sarah then immediately printed the acetate onto cloth to create mono prints.

 

Screen printing

Sarah drew alongside the pupils in the observational drawing activity outdoors. She took both the pupils drawings and her own, cutting them out using a craft knife to create stencils. Sarah and a group of pupils then screen printed the stencils.

Pupils also created interesting natural prints by laying natural objects on to the fabric and screen printing them.

iphone upload May 2016 1471

Relief printing

While the class made simple rubbings with natural forms onto paper using wax crayons Sarah made rubbings with natural forms through her silk screen using a water soluble pastel. She then printed them on to fabric.

Sarah then sewed all these individual pieces of fabric into one tactile banner, an artwork exploring both the imagined sound and texture of the historic log, as well as its materiality.

final artworks 1

Sarah’s artworks

For her own artwork, Sarah selected areas of the printed banner. Using photoshop she edited these designs to incorporate them within the geometric symbol for the tree of life. In this she referenced both the elm tree the log would have been cut from and its new function as a water pipe to bring fresh water to London. The design was digitally printed on to cotton rag paper.

 final artwork 3.jpg

What we thought about the project:

‘As a school we loved the project as the children would be able to celebrate their work in a museum that they knew and loved. It was a fantastic opportunity for the children to work with an artist in the comfort of their own surroundings. It gave the class the option to work with different mediums and see how an experienced artist used her skills.’

‘As a reluctant teacher of any creative art activity, due to management and lack of experience of different art forms, I was nervous. The object you choose is irrelevant as long as you keep an open mind and are willing to give everything a try. The result will be not only a lovely piece of art but a more confident and creative teacher. It’s a great project. Give it a go!’

Denise

‘As an artist, I was able to explore the object fully in a way that was relevant and meaningful to the group I was working with, which was inspiring. It was amazing to see how much potential learning /creative approaches/ tangents/ inspirations can arise from a simple object across the curriculum.  Art provides the key to open lessons into literacy, geography, history and even maths.’

Sarah

 

 

 

Categories
Learning Materials

Collage: Kenneth Halliwell

 

Collage is a visual art technique where the artwork is made by combining different forms, to create a new whole. Materials used can vary from newspaper, magazines and handmade paper to texts, photographs, and found objects.

Collage is a versatile technique that can be incorporated into lessons to explore

  • a variety of visual and tactile elements, including colour, pattern, texture, line and tone
  • creative starting points and how these can be developed into a range of ideas
  • opportunities for pupils to work on their own and collaboratively with their peers

 

Activity 1: Exquisite Corpses

Resource list

  • various magazines and/or newspapers
  • scissors
  • glue sticks
  • white paper
  • food colouring
  • PVA glue

Kenneth Halliwell was a British actor, writer and artist who is well known for his collages, created with his partner Joe Orton and also independently. His independent work often used layers of photographs combining images of architectural features, such as staircases, arches, doorways and windows, with human facial features.

  1. Split the class into smaller groups sitting at tables, ask them to cut out images from the magazines/ newspapers that represent either human features or parts of buildings
  2. Use these images to create Exquisite Corpses. Give each pupil a piece of paper, ask them to create a head and glue it to the top of the page. Then fold the paper over to hide the head.
  3. Remind pupils to be as imaginative as possible, for example show them how to substitute architectural features for human features (a window for an eye, a door for a mouth etc.)
  4. Mix some yellow food colouring or watercolour paint with PVA glue to create a coloured varnish. This can be applied to the collage t give it an aged effect.

 

Activity 2: Texture

Resource list

  • thick paper
  • watercolours
  • salt
  • acrylics
  • scissors
  • glue sticks
  • PVA glue
  • clear wax candles
  1. Give pupils 5 pieces of paper each. Paint each a different bright colour- pupils can choose whatever colour they like. Pupils could create textured colours by using: dilutted watercolour washes; thick acrylic paint; watercolour with salt granules sprinkled on top when wet (this creates a speckled effect); make marks on paper with clear wax and paint over the top with acrylic or watercolour paint
  2. In groups, bring all the pupils individual pieces of paper together to create a library of colours and textures.
  3. Then create challenges for each group: ask them to create a collage that represents a letter of the alphabet through imagery rather than text. For example, for the letter ‘Z’ pupils might use black and white stripes to give the suggestion of a zebra.
  4. The class then gathers together to view each group’s works and guess which letter is represented.

Collage tips

  • Try layering colours and textures
  • Try using torn edges, this gives an interesting effect when covered with a colour wash
  • Layer and layer again to create varied textures. Try creating a collage then painting over it and then drawing over that
  • Give the final piece a layer of gloss or PVA glue over the top for a shiny coat
  • Be creative when thinking of collage material. Possible examples could be:
  1. pages out of old books
  2. dictionary definitions
  3. phone directories
  4. colored tissue paper
  5. coffee filters
  6. pressed leaves and flowers
  7. cut outs from magazines
  8. wrapping paper
  9. playing cards and game pieces

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Kenneth Halliwell

To find out more about local artist Kenneth Halliwell’s life and work read our exhibition.

Categories
Learning Materials

Mark making on giant paper

In 2015, as part of the Arts Council England funded project ‘Putting the Wunder back into the Wunderkammer,’ Islington Museum worked with Samuel Rhodes Secondary School, artist Charlotte Young From Cubitt Education and the Estorick Collection of Modern Italian Art. Pupil explored Futurist drawings and paintings from the Estorick’s collection, focusing on the depiction of sound and movement. The pupils then created large scale collaborative paintings using a range of materials and tools that encouraged different movement and mark making.

Resource list

  • A very large roll of high quality, thick paper
  • A variety of drawing and painting materials, including pencils, charcoal, pens, pastels etc
  • Sound clips
  • Wheeled objects, such as toy cars and bike wheels
  • Masking and/or duct tape
  • String
  • Rulers/ garden cane
  • Aprons

 The activity: mark making

Clear a big space. Cut a long piece of paper from the roll of paper. The paper should be as big as can fit in your workshop space, but allow enough space for pupils to move freely around the paper and the room. Tape the paper to the floor using masking or duct tape. Ensure all drawing materials are also prepared ahead of time and easy for the pupils to access.

This activity is made up of a range of mark making activities. You should spend around 5-10 minutes on each bullet point. You can choose a few of your favourites to fill the lesson, or work over a number of lessons on the same piece of paper, adding a new mark making technique each time. 

Using hands/feet/bodies

  • In pairs: draw around your partner’s hands, feet, heads and bodies. Now swap.
  • Individually: lie on the paper with a pen or pencil in each hand and make ‘snow angels’
  • Using ‘push-me-pull-me’ pens (2 pens tied together with a length of string) and working in pairs, take it in turns to ‘pull’ the pens in different directions
  • Draw as fast as you can
  • Draw as slowly as you can
  • Draw ‘spiky’
  • Draw ‘soft’
  • Draw ‘wavy’
  • Use different emotional gestures to draw: draw ‘angry’, ‘happy’, ‘laughing’, ‘frowning’, etc
  • Flick and dribble paint onto the paper
  • Draw to different kinds of music, what does the music look like

 

Using music

Play music for participants to paint or draw to. Exercises could include drawing:

  •  in time to different kinds of music. Hip hop will make you draw differently to opera
  • shapes and lines according to the mood of the different types of music. Is the music jagged, smooth, pointy, etc.
  • only when the music is playing

 

 

Using objects as drawing tools

Use a variety of objects dipped in paint to draw with such as:

  • toy cars
  • measuring wheel
  • roller skates (to be used with hands, not worn!)
  • bicycle wheel/ scooter
  • hoops
  • hand and finger prints
  • wearing wellies dipped in paint
  • make extra-long paint brushes by tying brushes to rulers/ garden canes with tape or string

Painting - no faces45

Creating a sound piece in response

Once your class have created their artwork, gather the pupils around the painting. Ask them to find sections that they liked, enjoyed painting, or found inspiring. As a class/ or in groups, discuss that section (‘it has wavy lines’ ‘it is blue.’) Then think about what it might sound like. For example, ‘wavy and blue’ might sound like the sea.

In groups, compose a sound effect for your piece. In turns record the sound effects.

Then listen to your class sound piece while looking at the picture.

 Mark making extensions 

  1. If working with a group who might find it difficult to use the floor, get participants to work individually or in pairs at tables.
  2. Try mounting large sheets of paper on a wall instead of the floor. This might work well for teenage participants or if there is not much floor space available. This would also allow participant to create multiple ‘extensions’ of their drawing tools in order to be able to reach the top of the paper. Extensions can also be made for floor drawings, for example, tying or taping pens and pencils to garden canes.
  3. Some individuals with SEN have particular sensitivities to sound and touch. Be mindful to check with participants if, for example, any audio is too loud for them. Some pupils may also be worried about getting dirty so have some aprons and rubber gloves ready if you think this may be the case.
  4. This activity could work well outside during the summer and you could try using more messy ways of mark making such as paint-filled water bombs, ice paints or pots of paint with holes punched in the bottom.
  5. Any paint splattered coveralls or gloves can be cut up and used to add collage to the large paintings.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Arts Council logo

Categories
Learning Materials

Mail Art: printing stamps and image transfers

In 2015, as part of the Arts Council England funded project ‘Putting the Wunder back into the Wunderkammer,’ Islington Museum worked with Highbury Grove School, artist Carl Stevenson From All Change and the British Postal Museum and Archive (BPMA.) Students were inspired by the BPMA’s unique collection of mail art, historical letters and curious addresses, identifying
elements they’d like to incorporate into their own mail art. Students explored a range of different media and techniques, including print making, stamp making and using vinyl. Their final work was displayed at the BPMA archive  in January 2015.

Ever since the invention of the postal service, people have sent weird and wonderful things through the post. The American artist Ray Johnson is considered to be the first person to send an artwork through the post. Today artists use a range of media and techniques to create mail art. Mail art can incorporate everything from collage to print works, even the position of the stamp on the envelope can convey a hidden message to the recipient.

Resource list

  • Pencil
  • Polytile
  • Paint trays
  • Printing ink
  • Printing rollers
  • Paper

The activity: making stamps

  1. Start with a piece of polytile. Using a pencil, draw your design into the polytile. Designs could be anything from letters, patterns, symbols, small images or emoticons. You will need to be careful to press hard enough into the polytile to make an indentation, but not too hard so that it pierces the polytile.
  2. Put some printing ink on to the paint trays, roll it with a printing roller until it is smooth.
  3. Use the printing roller to put ink on to your polytile, covering your design. Do not use too much ink.
  4. Place the inked side of the polytile on to a piece of paper. Run a clean printing roller over the back of the polytile, pressing it onto the paper.
  5. Carefully peel back the polytile to reveal your printed design on the paper.

 

Resource list

  • Images from old posters and advertising
  • Wide clear parcel tape
  • Basin of warm water
  • PVA glue
  • Paper

The activity: image transfers

  1. Choose an image, it could be from an advert, magazine, book etc. Take a back and white photocopy of your image.
  2. Cut out the photocopy and stick clear parcel tape to the image. You may need to use multiple strips on wider images. Rub the tape to make sure it is in contact with the whole image.
  3. Put the taped image into warm water, covering it gently. Slowly rub away the paper. You will find that the paper will rub away in the water leaving behind the black photocopy image stuck to the tape.
  4. Paint PVA glue on the sticky side of the tape. Stick the image, glue side first on to your paper. Then wait for it to dry.
  5. Once it is fully dry if you are careful you can slowly peel the tape away to leave the photocopy image stuck to the paper.

Mail Art extensions

  • Use the image transfers and rubber stamps to decorate envelopes. Post them to someone else (e.g. school, home, to another organisation) for them to add to your design. Continue posting the sheet back and forth. See how the design develops during the collaboration.
  • Pass each pupil’s designs around the class during the project so that each envelope has a contribution from each pupil.
  • Invent picture codes and make addresses for the envelopes in code. Post the letters and see if they reach the destination. Or pass it around the class and see if the class recipient can decode it.
  • Vary the methods used to decorate the envelopes and even the envelopes themselves, maybe using 3D collage, origami or giant sized envelopes.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Arts Council logo