Express Yourself!

Posted on: 14/09/2023

guest of honour

A commitment to excellence in the visual and media arts is an established ingredient in Harrodian's identity. This year's annual week-long summer showcase of GCSE and A Level work from our Art, Design, Photography, 3D Design, Graphic Design, Media and Film Studies departments was opened on 23rd June by guest of honour Ori Gersht (above), fine art photographer and Harrodian parent, and as ever, a great deal of highly distinctive work was on show. 

sculpture under water

The A level Art output was defined by its high quality and its variety, with students drawing on sources and materials inspired both by fashion and fine art. Lola’s eye-catching 3D sculpted figure suspended upside down and surrounded by pebble water drops took up a central space in the marquee, above. Taking inspiration from Italian sculptor Giacometti, Lola created a simultaneously fragile but thick-skinned figure made of multiple layers of plaster sinking underwater. Entitled ‘Migration,’ her piece conveyed the struggle and weakness felt by an immigrant’s journey across the sea.

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artist 1


A few steps away, a large TV screen showed an animation made by fellow A Level art student Tyler.  Taking his cues from the Surrealist movement, Tyler created his own fantasy world inhabited by geometric people which he drew digitally frame by frame on an iPad. A trestle table next door displayed another of his exhibits entitled ‘Countryballs’- work that he styled on a political cartoon/internet meme that depicts countries as ‘sentient spheres’, each decorated in the colours of its national flag and each adopting the behaviour of its political leaders.  Each ‘Countryball’ was hand made to scale using textiles and polyester filling and Tyler used his knowledge of Mathematics to scale the size of each ball proportionally to the country’s land area, above

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Spectacular painting such as Lea’s exploration of human imperfections and flaws inspired by Gustav Klimt, above, sat alongside Elfi’s space-inspired padded garments, while Ted’s Dali-esque table and chair occupied a space adjacent to mixed-media ocean tableaux by Jake that incorporated wax, plaster and oil paint, below.  

ocean seen

The GCSE artwork that was exhibited was striking both for its highly conceptual and ambitious character and for the range of materials on show. A variety of 3D elements, relief pieces, rugs, weaving, sculptures contributed to a very diverse and engaging collection.   

To view more artwork on display at the Exhibition

On the other side of the marquee, Skye’s impressive project, a large and ethereal tapestry beckoned like a flag signalling the entry to the design and photography part of the exhibition. Entitled ‘The Language of Love,’ Skye’s piece documented different types of love through multiple images and photographs which she handprinted with colour dyes onto silk. The complicated and intricate process involved coating and cutting the silk, using acetate and UV light boxes to expose the images and finally sewing all the panels of silk together. Her work caught the eye of Ori Gersht, who was impressed with both its complexity and beauty. 

art exhibition
Fine art photographer Ori Gersht, above right, congratulates Skye on her A Level Photography project - a tapestry made from handprinted photos onto silk

Next to this, Romilly’s ‘negative-meets-positive’ still life of wine glasses created an impressive photo collage, as did her ‘Journeys’ project which simulated the 3D effect of peering through a keyhole, below.  

wine glasses

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To view more Photography, 3D Design and Graphic Design work on display at the Exhibition

Adjacent to the photography was a section dedicated to showcasing the creativity of Harrodian’s design students. Music-inspired postage stamp designs, logos and branded merchandise were among the projects displayed by Graphic Design students Ellie (below) and Josh.

graphic design 1 

In the space beyond, 3D Design work included detailed models of objects as diverse as hydroponic desktop plant growers, portable first aid kits and Bluetooth speakers. Alongside them were detailed maquettes of architectural designs including an ambitious concept for a floating holiday home. With its distinctive beehive design, Fynn’s 3D model of a block of apartments, was particularly striking, below.   

3D Design

The work created by Media and Film Studies students was shown in the dining room: a TV screen played music videos created by GCSE Media Studies pupils and short horror films written, created and filmed by GCSE Film Studies pupils whilst A Level Media Studies projects – namely website and magazine designs – were displayed on boards. 

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To view more Media and Film Studies work on display at the Exhibition