School Prints - Year 4
For the fourth edition of School Prints, there is a new focus on supporting the teaching of black histories across the curriculum in local schools. The artists who have generously created a new print for the project are: Hurvin Anderson (b. 1965, Birmingham); Alvaro Barrington (b. 1983 Caracas, Venezuela); Sir Frank Bowling OBE, RA (b. 1934, Bartica, Essequibo, British Guiana); Lubaina Himid CBE (b. 1954, Zanzibar, Tanzania); Claudette Johnson (b. 1959, Manchester); Yinka Shonibare CBE (b. 1962, London)
Hurvin Anderson said of the project: “Art is a vital part of children’s education, not just in inspiring the next generation of artists but creativity in general. It is also an area of education which has been continually overlooked and devalued by successive governments. It was therefore important to me to support The Hepworth Wakefield School Prints project in which there is an attempt to redress the balance. In particular, in this tumultuous year, drawing attention to the Black Lives Matter movement through creating a visual representation of everyday black experiences has never felt more relevant. I was honoured to be invited.”
Alvaro Barrington said: “Education is going through a lot of important questioning about what it needs to proceed and I believe the more voices in the conversation the better everyone will be served.”
Sir Frank Bowling OBE, RA, said: “I have always tried to support young artists and opportunities to nurture their development. This project offered a way to do so with young children, which I feel is important.”
Lubaina Himid CBE, said: “It is vital that our young people can feel that they are important to us and begin to understand that we are all committed to investing in every way we can to help them expand and extend their potential.”
Claudette Johnson said: “I thought it important to support the project because I remember, as a school child, gazing at the Bruegel, Picasso and Canaletto prints that hung along the corridors of my secondary school. I took it for granted that art would be available to look at and think about as I moved around the school. I believe this should be every child’s birthright.”
Yinka Shonibare CBE, said: “I’m proud to be a part of this year’s project, which supports the teaching of black histories in the local curriculum. School is where I was first introduced to art, and education is key to developing a wider understanding around issues of representation.”
Engagement work with local schools took place over the Summer Term 2023 at Outwood Primary Academy Park Hill, Pinders Primary School, St Mary’s CE Primary School and St Austin’s Catholic Primary School in Wakefield.
Nearly 200 pupils worked with artists during special workshops in school and during visits to The Hepworth Wakefield to discover more about the School Prints and engage with themes within the artworks. Taking inspiration from the School Prints pupils created individual and large-scale collaborative prints, experimenting with different types of printmaking including linocut, collagraph, monoprint and block print.
For a lot of pupils it was their first visit to the gallery and it was particularly special for some pupils were able to meet Hurvin Anderson and ask him some questions about being an artist and the inspirations behind his School Print:
“It gave me goosebumps to be able to meet him. I was so happy I got to ask him my question, and he answered me!”
“I was so shocked. I’m very excited I got to meet a real life famous artist.”
Year 5 pupils, Outwood Primary Academy Park Hill
To celebrate the schools involvement in the project The Hepworth held celebration events for the each school community, with an exhibition of all the pupils artwork created during the engagement project, and a presentation of their School Prints to be installed in-school permanently. There were also special family days at The Hepworth for each school, inviting pupils to bring their families back to the gallery to take part in our family activities and workshops.
“The celebration event at the school was so memorable. The sheer generosity of the gallery was overwhelming. This really helped to generate excitement in the community and left a lasting impression on parents and pupils. The fact we have been gifted 6 incredible prints linking to the project is such a fabulous gesture.” Art Curriculum Lead, Outwood Primary Academy Trust
Here’s what some of the pupils at St Mary’s CE Primary School said about the project:
“I learnt that even if you have a different religion, race, country, or are disabled you can still do art.”
“I learnt to never give up and to believe in yourself!”
“I enjoyed learning about how artists got inspired into art because that inspires me as I want to be an artist when I grow up.”
“What surprised me was the results of our art because it was a different type of art to what we usually do.”
“I like printing because Yinka, the artist, inspired me.”