This week I was training at Malvern Way Infant and Nursery School in Rickmansworth. Over the past 8 years they have been developing their grounds. This has included giving children opportunities to work with artists and sculptors. Usually the artist creates a piece of work for the school and this is used as inspiration for children’s own work.
I’m not sure of the name of the sculptor who created this piece of art. Anyway, it is cleverly situated where children can walk along a corridor with windows on both sides. So on one side are the artists’ works. Looking out of the other window, one can see the children’s works that have been created with the artist.
Whilst the works may not obviously be connected, I loved the funky-junkiness of these sculptures. They come across as highly original and individual even though similar materials have been used by all the children involved.
The kite is a collective piece of work and typifies the approach. Every sculpture required time spent looking and appreciating the effect because surprises were hidden in each one. For example in the photo below, you can see that a stick has been added.
The use of Perspex has been great. The colours and the shapes add a brightness to the works in combination with lots of unwanted CDs.
Corks, ply board and other wood offcuts have been either screwed on or nailed in. There’s also been evidence of sawing the wood. Thus a variety of practical skills are being applied here. This is much more original than many technology and woodworking projects I see where children are directed to make a particular object with a fixed outcome. These sculptures seem to have a balance between the process and the product.
The trick appeared to be to create a broad wooden base and post. Onto this most of the junk and off-cuts can be added.
I also rather like the one or two pure-wood sculptures. They highlight the pattern and waves shapes. The sculpture below didn’t need the fancy-smancy Perspex or CD bling.
Many thanks to the staff at Malvern Way Infant and Nursery School for making me feel so welcome. May you continue the positive legacy started by Janet English and the grounds continue to grow and be a wonderful place to learn and play.