Creating Connections Project
5 March 2020
New Art Exchange has been awarded £10,000 by Art Fund to deliver an innovative project which will establish partnerships between 3 inner-city Nottingham Schools and 3 schools beyond the city, New Art Exchange and Nottingham Trent University.
One class from each school with a culturally diverse pupil base will form a partnership with one class from a school serving a less culturally diverse community. The pupils from both schools will meet at New Art Exchange to develop a special relationship in a series of four artist-led workshops.
Ruth Lewis Jones Learning Producer at New Art Exchange said: "The project aims to nurture understanding and empathy between young people from diverse cultural backgrounds; to celebrate the cultural lives of young people and to combine art with philosophical discussion to explore challenging issues such as racism and other issues related to difference."
During the first workshop children discussed the importance of welcoming strangers and being kind to those who appear different from us. Throughout the project young people will learn about unfamiliar cultures and faiths, gain new art skills, experience contemporary art and make new friends.
Bronwen Smalley from Radford Academy said "The project is an excellent opportunity for children to work in a different way, in a different space. It will help them to develop interpersonal skills; experience the art gallery and think about how artists are inspired."
Stephen Deuchar, Director of Art Fund, said: "Creative Connections is bringing together a wide range of children to explore their multicultural backgrounds in a fun and imaginative way. Art Fund is delighted to be supporting this art project which will help broaden connections between different communities in Nottinghamshire."
Alex Kosogorin, Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Education, at Nottingham Trent University who leads the discussion between the children said: "I was very impressed with the pupils from all 6 schools, ranging from Year 3 to Year 9, who conducted some very mature positive discussions about challenging issues such as belonging, rejection, friendship, discrimination, prejudice and stereotyping in a safe space."
The workshops at New Art Exchange are led by Associate Artists, Shamila Chady, Trevor Woolery and Elaine Winter. The children will make artworks during the sessions that will be displayed in a celebration event at New Art Exchange on Friday 5 June 2020. Friends and families will be invited to see the exhibition and it will be open to the public.
Art Fund is an independent membership-based British charity, which raises funds to aid the acquisition of artworks for the nation.
The schools taking part in the project are: Brunts Academy and Nottingham Girls Academy; Asquith primary and Radford Academy & Welbeck Primary and Pennine Way Junior Academy.