Deckchair dad sends young artist on national tour as show starts alongside Grayson Perry's Provincial Punk
Some of the skills for which Grayson Perry is so celebrated have been reflected by children and youngsters in an imaginative exhibition opening alongside his Provincial Punk display at Turner Contemporary in Margate.
Chosen from efforts by more than 200 young artists, 41 works feature in the eclectic Generation ART: Young Artists on Tour. Asked to draw his favourite day of the summer holidays, one of the entrants, seven-year-old Stanley Bloxidge, chose his dad relaxing on holiday, shaping from memory in the professional studio of tutor Loraine Rutt.
“He had a very clear idea from the outset that he wanted to show his dad relaxing and reading the paper,” says Rutt, who leads The Arches Art Club in south London.
“So we broke the whole concept down into component parts which he ably developed and skillfully assembled.
“Despite his young age, Stanley quickly understood the process of letting sections of clay harden before loading the main body of work on top of it to ensure its stability.
“He was immediately and justifiably proud of his achievement and wanted to take it home to show everyone.
“I am just one of a large number of people Stanley is organising to make a camping trip to Margate to visit his ‘Dad’ at Turner Contemporary.”
Bloxidge, who was inspired by his first holiday abroad and the first break in many years for his father, is said to be “very happy” at being selected.
He is not the only new artist feeling fulfilled – other nominees include Cocoon, a sculpture by 18-year-old Esther Lovell which was inspired by Perry and the Venice Biennale, and Feeling Stones, in which thoughts and emotions have been engraved into pebble-like ceramics by pupils from a school in Kent.
“Many of the children find it hard to express their own emotions, so within this project we focused on using ceramics as a way of expressing their feelings and create a calm working atmosphere for the children to work in,” says Grace Jones, their teacher.
“Some students find it challenging and frustrating when they are asked to write, and need that confidence from the staff to succeed and achieve.
“It was a conscious decision to let the children work independently on their writing. This can be seen through their spelling mistakes and misplaced letters.
“We wanted to allow the students to make these mistakes so it is clear the children led this project. The resulting artwork is very moving.”
The Storm was made by primary school artists examining the works of Turner, Lowry and more, set to the stirring sounds of Beethoven’s Symphony No 6.
“I enjoy doing artwork as it makes me feel like I am free and happy and I can do whatever I want,” explains Nimesh Khistariya, a 10-year-old who helped float the idea.
“My piece was a whole city and thousands of boats crashing into the buildings.”
William Morris, from the Isle of Wight, where the display will tour to in 2016, took a chance on an old Abba record for his contemporary sculpture.
“His name is Fernando as his stage is made from a heat-moulded Fernando vinyl,” says the artist, having looked all the way back to 1986 during a workshop with sculptor Chris Jenkins.
“He is inspired by two of my most favourite things – technology and music. Every part of him is made from recycled materials including a piano key and computer parts.
“Recycling is often a theme in my work. I am so very proud that Fernando has been selected for the exhibition.”
Generation ART’s showcase of rising stars will also visit New Walk Museum and Art Gallery in Leicester.
“The selection panel chose artworks which stood out as high quality and which exemplified what young artists are capable of creating,” reflects Jane Sillis, the Director of the project.
“The panel were impressed by the range of medium young artists used and the variety of stimulus they drew on, including artworks and the world around them.
“Many of the selected pieces were created by children and young people in response to artworks or with the support of professional artists.
“We hope that the artworks will be a source of inspiration for other young artists, teachers, artists and educators alike.”
- Visit Generation ART: Young Artists on Tour and find the exhibition on Facebook. Use the hashtag #GenerationART on Twitter or Instagram. Pictures courtesy Engage.
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