School art project a huge success
An art exhibition held at Amble Links First School was the culmination of a very successful art project, led by artist Katherine Renton, who attended the school as a pupil in the 1970s.
‘Northumberland’s Colourful Coast’ is an initiative fully funded by the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership, with the aim of using art to promote an appreciation of our coastal environment and wildlife within its community.
During the project, that ran over ten weeks, the Year 4 class were taken on trips to Alnwick, Warkworth and Bamburgh Castle where they learnt skills in sketching the castles. They also enjoyed a trip to the Farne Islands, courtesy of Serenity Farne Island Boat Tours, prior to creating their own clay models of the wildlife that they saw there. A visit to the beach by Cliff House included the opportunity to create land art, using found materials on the beach, followed by an afternoon of birdwatching, led by the Space for Shorebirds team who provided binoculars for all the pupils.
The class were also treated to a visit to the Bailiffgate Museum and Gallery to view Katherine’s recent solo art exhibition ‘KEEP’ which was the initial inspiration for the idea of a community art project with the school.
“It’s been an absolute pleasure to work with Penguin Class and the staff at Amble Links First School,’ Katherine remarked, ‘The pupils have been beautifully behaved throughout and given 100% to every activity.
She explained, “At the beginning of the project the children were only able to identify the puffin as a local species, but on the Farne Islands trip, towards the end of the project, they were happy to point out gannets, razorbills, and many other species.”
Head Teacher, Paul Heeley, said “From the outset, the children have absolutely loved being a part of this project. They have listened carefully and with interest to Katherine and learnt a range of new skills and techniques that have led to some excellent quality artwork. The trips that Katherine arranged have been a real highlight for the children, offering them opportunities that we might not have been able to easily provide ourselves. The end of project exhibition showcasing the children’s work was also a great success.”
It is hoped that the children’s exhibition will now be transferred to a shop window on Church St.
Katherine’s exhibition ‘Castle Coast’ has just opened at the Newbiggin Maritime Centre and will run until the end of October.