It has been a wonderful week of creativity, versatility and collaboration this week at GEMS (Singapore). We have had the pleasure of visiting musicians from “Musical Futures ” and “Djembe Singapore” as well as jazz players from La Salle College of the Arts working with students from Early Years through to the senior years. They have been involved in working on pop tunes, African drumming and dance, in addition to jazz performance.
Our fabulous Arts Assistant, Danielle Cutiongco, took on the role of Artist in Residence in SY drama classes to offer our students inspiration and guidance from a professional actress and theatre artist currently working in the performing arts industry. Ms. D shared some of what she learned through training and graduating from Lasalle College of the Arts.
Students in grades G6, G7 and G8 have experienced fun explorative activities which encouraged them to work together, build confidence, consider how stories are told, and simply enjoy different forms of expression.
Students in grades G9 and G10 were challenged to consider abstract potential when devising and creating original performances, examining and reconsidering the use of space and breaking audience conventions in particular.
In Visual Arts students became the resident artists themselves, collaborating across the years to redefine many well used spaces around the school. Our EY students worked continually throughout the week to contribute to a unique artwork based on Gustav Klimt’s Tree of Life. Whilst older students upscaled the fabulous drawing with a play based theme created by these same Early Years students. The original work was ‘super-sized’ and reproduced on the wall in the younger students play space.
Grade 8 and 9 took ownership of the stairwell and produced a fantastic series of public art pieces to enhance the blank walls and inspire students as they move between classes. This will be an ongoing project for SY students in the next sign up for ECA’s – creating individual and collaborative community art to enhance our school environment.
Grade 4 demonstrated great collaboration when using collage mixed media papers to create linear artworks to be combined together to create a large striking piece. In pairs, the students searched for art words and then added paint textures to complete the work. Bright colours and creativity were key while learning all of the language of art. We are very much looking forward to displaying the final collaborative artwork for all to see.
Grade 6 and 7 played their part by creating their own symbols to form the word ART. The students demonstrated strong creativity and imagination when symbolising each letter in a unique way. Using the strong contrast of black and white the combined words will really stand out when displayed around the school.
Wednesday’s Showcase provided a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the many talents of our wider school community where both amateur and professional artists came together to share their work. We are very fortunate to have so many individuals supporting school initiatives who gave up their time to provide the whole school with a chance to experience the arts and interact in a truly creative and inspiring atmosphere.
Each lunchtime PY students were also invited to paint their own designs onto stones displaying a range of ideas and originality. These have now found a home amongst the greenery for all to see and admire. This is definitely an initiative we will be exploring further in the future.
Towards the end of the week we were joined by students from La Salle College of the Arts to share their Visual Arts work, host mini-workshops and perform a collection entertaining Jazz music for all ages.
Parents also enjoyed getting ‘in on the act’ too, developing their knowledge and skills in the after school abstract art sessions that were run all week.
The week finished on a high with our SY students Drama Club performances in various locations around the school and the fast-paced ‘taster’ Open Mic sessions run by our PY and SY Student Council.
A huge thank you goes out to all students, staff and parents who have made this week what it is. I think the smiles on the faces of the students and the increased flow of creativity around the school are a testament to the experiences encountered and the outcomes created.
Claire Rimmer, Head of Department, Visual Arts & Design