Natasha Devon MBE, the mental health campaigner who was a recent visitor to the School, referred during her visit to ‘exercise, creativity and mindfulness’ as the three key pursuits which can help young people to de-stress. Mrs Shouksmith, Head of Art supports this reference, “The creative element of art is a given, but many forget that when we immerse ourselves in this type of activity, particularly for extended periods of time, we are effectively in a state of mindfulness. So, by engaging in an art-based project, pupils are also being given the opportunity to emotionally re-balance and heal”.
King Edward’s has a vibrant Art Department committed to an inclusive approach, upholding the philosophy that every individual can develop their artistic skills and creative thinking through art, and should have the opportunity to “emotionally re-balance and heal”.
The Art Department boasts spacious rooms full of light, a ceramics room, printmaking studio, photography darkroom, library and ICT resource room, and takes the opportunity throughout the seasons for outdoor inspiration in the School’s 100 acres of woodland and landscaped grounds. The Art Studios are open every day, including Saturday mornings, so that pupils can immerse themselves in art in their free time.
The Art Department is staffed by specialist art and design teachers and boasts an Artist-In-Residence. Through the academic curriculum and co-curricular programme, we offer a range of art courses to suit all interests and levels of ability. Girls and boys can engage in everything from drawing and painting to photography and digital image manipulation. Our artist-in-residence hosts weekly extension sessions for all Art scholars, which lead to an exhibition of their work.
Lower and Senior School Art Clubs are open to all pupils irrespective of whether taking a formal examination. Artistic events are hosted on occasional weekends and evenings, with workshops on, for example, tie dye; fashion drawing and illustration; plaster cast; art to music; yoga and art.
The Bunker Gallery is a permanent exhibition space within the School which affords our pupils, from all year groups, the opportunity to professionally display their artwork at the end of the relevant path of study. Such exhibitions celebrate our pupils’ work and promote and stimulate debate about their, and their peers work.
Workshops and masterclasses plus trips to galleries and museums both locally and in London, provide valuable opportunities for pupils to experience first-hand art in context and come away inspired and compelled to create their own work with fresh enthusiasm.
King Edward’s hosts the popular annual Prep and Primary Schools’ Spring Art Competition, enthusing the local school communities to create outstanding work and come together to enjoy and be inspired by young talent.
Please do make sure you take in our Art Studios when you visit the School. You will be most welcome.