Art pupils - both past and present - have been inspiring the next generation of young Harrodian artists
Upper Sixth Form artist, Alice, was invited as Mr Hooke's special guest to Pre-Prep assembly this week, where she spoke to the children, staff and parents about her A Level artwork. Her sister Lottie, a former Harrodian pupil, is currently studying Textiles at Central Saint Martins, and inspired to follow in similar footsteps, Alice is applying to a range of London art schools to complete an Art Foundation before reading History of Art at university.
She showed the audience two pieces of artwork produced in response to an A Level art project entitled East and West - a Chinese terracotta warrior and a Van Gogh inspired portrait of Japanese mayor Yukio Ozaki, below on Alice's right.
She transformed her figure from a traditional terracotta warrior (representing the army of the first Emperor of China) to a more modern version by painting on hip-hop style clothing in the style of South Korean K-pop boy band BTS - a group with fans that have been banned on some social media channels in China. Alice's enthusiasm about the project is palpable as she explains how her warrior figure challenges the existence of censorship in current times.
I loved talking to the Pre-Prep in assembly about my artwork and really hope that some of them might feel inspired to be more creative
Alice, A Level Art Student
The second of her two pieces is a portrait of Japanese mayor Yukio Ozaki in front of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington D.C., the city where Alice grew up. She painted it in the style of Vincent Van Gogh and depicts a moment in history when cherry blossom trees were given to the people of the United States by the people of Japan as a gift of friendship. Her third piece, featured on her left, above, sets out to capture the essence of lockdown. She painted it from out in the garden, looking into the kitchen. It shows her mother and brother doing mundane chores like setting the table. She chose to use saturated and bright colours to make the lockdowns and pandemic seem less gloomy and depressing and to show light at the end of the tunnel.
When asked how she found the whole Pre-Prep assembly experience, Alice says; 'I loved talking to the Pre-Prep in assembly about my artwork and really hope that some of them might feel inspired to be more creative.'
Meanwhile pupils in our 11s and 12s who have been attending an after-school Art Club with Head of Art Ms Caldecott, below, also got the chance to show Pre-Prep pupils their amazing handmade puppets too.
They surprised the children and parents at Pre-Prep assembly by taking their puppets into the audience. When asked what the Pre-Prep children might have enjoyed most about seeing their artwork, Olivia (11s) says, 'they just loved our puppets and wanted to give them names! I think the Pre-Prep children were really excited to see some of the fun art stuff that they might be able to do at Harrodian when they are older."
I think the Pre-Prep children were really excited to see some of the fun art stuff that they might be able to do at Harrodian when they are older
Olivia, member of 11s/12s Art Club
Further up the school, alumna and former deputy Head Girl Darcy came to talk to a group of our Senior Art, Graphic Design and Photography students about her experience studying an Art Foundation at Central Saint Martins, below. Head of Art Ms Caldecott hopes Darcy will help some of the students make a decision about whether to apply for a foundation at certain London art schools, ahead of the application deadline next week.
Darcy provided a real insight into life at art school and was very enthusiastic about some of the projects she has been working on, including making cups out of bread and creating a toaster that brands toast! She talked about the diagnostic pathway at Central Saint Martins and how it has given her a flavour of different mediums and arts ranging from architecture to product design to fashion and textiles. Having chosen to specialise in Fine Art, she also talked about how much independence art students are given and how much freedom she has to experiment and explore her own ideas. Our current Harrodians asked her lots of questions and many left feeling informed and inspired about studying art after school.