Happy New Year dear readers! Apparently cleaning a corner of your house, going on a local adventure or spending time with children can all stimulate creativity. Or perhaps send the kids on their own little adventure and forget about tidying up! This new year I wish you many creative and messy moments. Sometimes juggling elements of life can be quite hectic and here are some rather belated posts.
First to feature is Artsdepot, the undiscovered South Bank Centre of the North (well North Finchley). Last Autumn I was invited there to create some artwork with two Barnet Schools, inspired by an English National Opera rendition of Laika the Space Dog. Laika never survived the confines of her space shuttle but I worked with the children to reimagine a happier ending. They developed simple sketches and pastel drawings suggesting pitted lunar surfaces, aliens and strange plants, referencing desert plants and rocky landscapes we had spent time researching. I guided the children into transforming their drawings into experimental 3D pieces, felting around wire, plastic discs, bubble wrap and glass beads.
There are only a couple more days to catch the tail end of Creative Routes 2013 featuring a felted installation I’ve titled ‘Laika Escapes’. Many thanks to fellow artist educator Stuart Simler for these photos.
I’m also pleased to mention a project I ran in November on behalf of Eastside Educational Trust with St John of Jerusalem School in Hackney. 120 children each designed a face to represent diverse communities around the world and we felted these onto a woolly globe. Some fabulous volunteers supported me in this demanding feat to create artwork for the school’s International Week in a single day.