At a whole school assembly held to celebrate the Arts, on Thursday 27 Oct, students watched drama and musical performances, a short film and they heard about the importance of visual arts on everyday life.
The assembly kicked off with the Brechtian ‘Everyman’ opening scene performed by the Elements class, All The World’s A Stage.
The media team produced a video that showed the scope of art projects available at Island School, from stage productions of modern classics to wildlife and street photography projects.
Year 13 IB Visual Arts student Kohana Wilson spoke of her own personal passions for the subject, and gave a summary of the importance of Art & Design within the Island School curriculum, the immediate environment and everyday lives.
She said, “The skills and techniques you learn up in [room] 252 provide the fundamental abilities you need to have to make any kind of art. You learn how to solve visual problems creatively, how to respond in unconventional- and perhaps abstract- ways, and you learn more about different artists and the history of art.” Her full presentation is below.
Her remarks where followed by the Chamber Choir who sang: ““The Rose” by Bette Midler.
Upcoming Arts events:
22 November – Stars In Their Eyes
3 December – Island 5-0
5 December – Light Up A Life concert
Kohana Wilson’s presentation
Good morning everyone! My name is Kohana, and I’m here today to talk to you about my personal passion: Visual Art.
Although art is a very practical subject, that requires technical skill and can be quite specialised, evidence of art and design is literally, everywhere, influencing you and the people around you in many ways.
Although you might not agree, I’d like to illustrate this very quickly by pointing out that the chances of there being someone in here who HASN’T seen a Disney movie is incredibly slim. I’m almost certain that most people in here, at some point, have played video games- whether that’s Overwatch or Tetris or CandyCrush (I have a younger brother in Year 11, so I would know!). Even the fact that you’re wearing a shirt proves that you’ve invested in the ideas of an artist who thought of the design. So you can see, it’s easy to prove that you’ve been affected, in some way or another, by the work of artists that you may not have even considered to be “art”.
I think it’s important to begin by clarifying that visual arts are not just restricted to the fine arts alone. Being an artist doesn’t just mean that you’re a painter, or a sculptor. The school bag you’re carrying, the clothes you’re wearing, and even the very building that we’re all standing/ sitting in, were all, at some point, conceptualised by someone who has pursued a career in the arts. And this artist’s vision and passion had all snowballed from the very moment they decided to work in the creative industry.
This was, and is, me. I realised very early on that despite all of my other interests, I wanted to contribute artistically and innovatively to the world through animation: what I’m hoping to pursue following my time here at Island School. But I wouldn’t be able to be a professional artist if it weren’t for the resources here in our art department. The different Island School visual arts curriculums really helped me in motivating me to construct the foundation upon which I explored what studying and making art is really like.
Most of the art curriculums- Elements, GCSE, BTEC, and IB Art- are based in fine art. Although you may not want to pursue that in the future, the skills and techniques you learn up in 252 provide the fundamental abilities you need to have to make any kind of art. You learn how to solve visual problems creatively, how to respond in unconventional- and perhaps abstract- ways, and learn more about different artists and the history of art. Even if you don’t have a burning desire to be a professional artist, that doesn’t mean you should let go of art. It can be really rewarding when you make a piece that was inspired by something very personal and close to you.
From printmaking, to sculpture, to photo-collaging, the art department has facilities that can accommodate a number of different mediums. You have the opportunity to try to create something, and use this to communicate an idea without using words. It can develop your visual literacy to great extents, and especially if you try to source your own materials or create your own imagery.
If you’re looking for more exposure to art, the Art Department takes their classes out regularly to visit exhibitions, galleries, and workshops. You have the opportunity to view mentally-stimulating work and experience art first hand! It can be quite an overwhelming feeling, but it’s always good to expand your understanding of culture; and what better way to do this than through art.
I have friends in Year 13 who will go on to study graphic design, video game design, advertising, photography, architecture, illustration; and they have all learnt, developed and honed the core skills that they need through practicing art here at school, and being creative thinkers. This is where it all begins.
If you’re in Year 9 (or below), don’t be afraid to take an Elements course and see how you like it. Experiment with the facilities that the art department has to offer. And to all of the GCSE and IB Art students, I hope that you stay true to your art and your artistic integrity, keep creating, and continually learn through this process; because the importance of inventiveness and imagination have never been more relevant and valuable. And making art can allow you to develop into a person who can approach complicated situations and problems, and deal with them in unexpected ways. We need more people like this in the world; so I urge you all to please consider taking art at school, or at the very least, to keep being curious.