Monday, 10 November 2008

Drawing Stonehenge - Whitworth Gallery

I've recently attended an evening lecture at Whitworth Gallery which links in with an ongoing exhibition which is on until 23 December - it was a fantastic insight into Mark Anstees work at Stonehenge.

In the past few years the biggest ever archaeological investigation of the Stonehenge landscape has been taking place. The chance to witness landmarks like this uncovered comes once in a lifetime, if at all. Last year six artists went to Stonehenge to witness this special event. Mark Anstee, Rebecca Davies, Leo Duff, Brian Fay, Janet Hodgson and Julia Midgley worked alongside archaeologists on the excavations. They researched how archaeologists drew their discoveries and recorded the spectacle of the dig - its processes, people, tools and finds.

While the exhibition is on show, the artists will be returning to Stonehenge to work on this year's dig. To find out what happens go to:

This project has been co-ordinated by Helen Wickstead and funded by the Caroline Humby-Teck Trust

Saturday, 8 November 2008

Putting on the Glitz - Whitworth Gallery

Its not often I get to run shoulders with Laurence Llewellyn Bowen so I was delighted to get an invite to last nights 'Putting on the Glitz' at The Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester.

With a great intro from the flamboyant king of the cuffs (only small cuffs last night though) it is a wonderful opportunity to view wallpapers and coverings with that extra something

Traditionally, wallcoverings incorporating precious metals could only be afforded by the wealthy. For those aspiring to wealth, such luxury was highly desirable. Putting on The Glitz explores how this desire has been (and can still be) satisfied, both by the real thing and by extremely effective imitations.

Selected from the Whitworth's collection, this exhibition features luxurious 18th century decorated leather, 19th century Japanese and French imitations, foils and other metallic finishes from the 1960s/70s, along with contemporary jewelled patterns that our ancestors might have envied. On show, together with fabulous new designs, are samples of gold and silver leaf, and other metals used in the manufacture of 21st century wallcoverings.

Indulging our appetite for glamour, this exhibition shows that glitz is no longer only the preserve of the well-off.

Thursday, 6 November 2008


Year 5, St Peters RC Primary School, Stalybridge

Art Workshops for 2009

Drawing is Fun.....KS2
Fast paced experimental drawing workshop to boost confidence and explore creativity.

Hats off to Breugel......KS1
The old ones are the best. Breugel’s 16th century “Wedding Feast” is the inspiration for this collage session with results you can wear home.

Matisse’s Musical Collage.......KS2
Combine art and music, explore opposites and improve cutting skills. Let “Jazz” inspire your stunning artwork.

The Magic of Monoprints or Funny Fruity Faces......KS1
A choice of printmaking techniques, oil pastel monoprints with results like magic, or healthy eating block prints inspired by Archimboldo’s “Seasons”.

Something more exotic......KS1 and KS2
Inspirational designs from India, Africa or The Pacific Islands. Based around textiles. Try
Y5 St Peters RC Primary School, Stalybridge
batik, tie dye, silk painting, applique and other techniques to produce beautiful banners to adorn your school.

Transformations - Recycling at its most beautiful......KS1 and KS2
The eco-schools dream, transform pre-used materials like carrier bags, envelopes, magazines and cereal boxes into wonderful artworks. Create handmade books, polyfused banners, mosaic tiles and quirky prints......all from rubbish.

New for 2009 - Cross curricular workshops complete with teachers notes.

Ancient Egyptians.
A choice of 4 Egyptian themed workshops using a variety of materials from re-cycled to dazzling metallics. All result in beautiful artifacts to display in your classroom.

Please phone or email Amanda for more information:
P. 01663 742204 M. 07790070897 E.


The Art of taking used plastic carrier bags, bin liners and other throwaway plastic packaging, carefully creating it into balls of plastic wool and then knitting.

Once you have knitted your Art heat is applied to develop wonderful textures which along with the various colours from the bags creates unique pieces of Art.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Arts Council England creates new independent organisation

Creative Partnerships - Arts Council England's successful creativity programme for schools - is set to become an independent organisation.

The programme, which develops young people's creativity, has been developed and managed by Arts Council England since it began in 2002. Due to the huge success of Creative Partnerships the Arts Council has decided that its future is best delivered through a new independent organisation - Creativity, Culture and Education (CCE).
The launch of the new organisation will be officially announced in a lecture given by Arts Council England Chief Executive, Alan Davey tonight (Monday 3 November) at the Royal Society of Arts.

Creative Partnerships has already worked with more than 750,000 young people and works intensively with 2,000 schools across England. Independent studies show that schools that work with Creative Partnerships improve their GCSE results faster, and that the scheme engages parents in their children's learning.

CCE will receive more than £75 million from Arts Council England between April 2009 - March 2011, the largest single grant in that two year period. The new organisation will have its headquarters in Newcastle, where the cultural renaissance of the North East - led by such organisations as The Sage Gateshead, Customs House, Tyne and Wear Museums, Live Theatre, BALTIC and MIMA, all with impressive education and learning programmes of their own - has created the perfect environment for the new national agency to grow and thrive.

"I am delighted that the Arts Council's largest funded organisation will be based in Newcastle," said Alan Davey, Chief Executive, Arts Council England. "Creative Partnerships was an audacious idea that has become a phenomenal success. The Arts Council has nurtured that success and it is now a natural progression for it to be run by an independent organisation."
"This independence will mean that Creativity, Culture and Education can grow to its full potential and even more young people can benefit from creativity in their lives."
"The Arts Council will make a significant investment in CCE over the next two years and our ambition is that this will lead to lifelong engagement with the arts for the young people involved."

Sir Christopher Frayling, Chairman, Arts Council England said: "Creative Partnerships has been one of the great achievements in arts and education over the last ten years. The passion and determination of the people involved has made the project hugely successful, and their efforts have touched young people's lives right across the country. Schools and artists have never been closer together. This has been such a good idea".

Paul Roberts OBE, Chairman, CCE, said: "Arts Council England's funding will allow us to bring creative professionals into the classroom to inspire young people and to raise their aspirations and achievements. As well as helping to raise education standards, creative learning helps young people develop the skills demanded by today's employers: like team-working, networking and confidence in communication."

CCE will continue to contribute to the Arts Council's commitment to work with children and young people and ensure that the arts are central to their lives. It will run alongside projects such as Artsmark, Arts Award, Youth Dance and Youth Music, which are all instrumental in helping the Arts Council to achieve its mission of great art for everyone.