Art Department Visit London

The Art department's annual sixth form visit to London on the 11 December included a visit to the Ai WeiWei exhibition at the Royal Academy. The artist is a thought provoking character whose work comments on "creative freedom, censorship and human rights as well as examining contemporary Chinese Art and Society". The students were challenged by work that dealt with his arrest in China as well as his re-use of old wood from destroyed Qing dynasty temples to create functionless items that are beautifully crafted by those with skills no longer required by a growingly industrialised and modern China. The exhibition provided the students with a chance to think about the nature of freedom of speech and place their own practical coursework ideas in context.

Students then walked through the West end to the Halcyon galleries to see contemporary artists' work from Mitch Griffiths, Mauro Perucchetti and Stan Lee, sit along side Picassos and Hockneys. This provided an opportunity to consider the value of Art with everything being on sale and frequently at six figure sums.

We finished the day marching our way through Knightsbridge to the Serpentine Galleries at Hyde Park where we saw the Work of Michael Craig- Martin and a modern exhibition on Hacking. The visit has given the students lots of food for thought as they think about completing their final coursework pieces in advance of the deadlines in January. Everyone was suitably tired on the way back and quite bemused as to why our train dragged a defunct carriage all the way to Salisbury before south West rail decided we should all get off and finish our journey on a new train.

Mr R Vine, Head of Art



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