On Wednesday, Year 1 and 2 visited the Tate Modern Museum as part of their enquiry led project about Art: Past and Future. Pupils went to the gallery as researchers to gather information to help them better understand how artists approach creating and developing art. They were also asked to think about the differences in artwork at the Tate Modern compared to the National Gallery. Before their visit, the pupils thought about what they wanted to find out from the artists.
Here is a sample of the questions they proposed:
- Can everything be art? Mimi
- What do you do in an exhibition? Amara
- What kind of art are you inspired by? Amara
- Is there a certain age that you start getting famous? Evie
- When did you first start art? Brooklyn
- What detail do you put into your art? Beatrix
- Does every artist start painting when they are little? Amara
Upon arrival at the gallery, pupils were split into two groups. Each group worked with a current artist in residence. The educators led pupils to different exhibits in which they participated in different exercises to challenge their creating thinking and stretch their perception and understanding of artwork. The exercises allowed pupils to view art in a way they may not have considered before and help increase the pupils' knowledge of how to read art.
For one of the exercises, pupils walked around the gallery with a mirror pointing to the ceiling, looking closely at the building. They generated a word to describe what they saw and wrote it on card. Next they searched an exhibit room to find an artwork they thought best represented their word. They placed it next to the art and had to explain why they placed the word next to the artwork.
At the end of the session pupils enjoyed a question and answer session with an artist. Pupils were very excited to learn that putting on an exhibition is like planning a party. They also enjoyed learning that you don't have to be famous to be an artist and that some artists may become famous when they are young or even as old as 70! Pupils also began to appreciate the difficulty in deciding what is and isn't art because everybody has different ideas about what art is.
When the pupils returned to school they reflected on their experience, what they had learnt and made comparisons to the National Gallery. All pupils agreed that the art at the Tate Modern was more unusual, more recent and made you think!
View photos of the trip, here.