The fifth and final day of this year’s Cairns ARTescape began in earnest. My dedicated group of beginners had the task of completing a major piece of work by the end of the day in time for inclusion in the class’s display, part of the huge end-of-the-week exhibition to celebrate the Winter Art School.
Creating a piece of artwork from ‘scratch’ is a major undertaking for any artist, and you must remember that this is a beginners’ group.
I wanted something original and personal from each student. Careful planning, research and negotiation had seen everyone underway the afternoon before, so it was all systems go on Friday morning! It was very satisfying to watch everyone as they worked with their visual diaries open alongside and their tables strewn with art mediums.
I set the class the goal of creating a piece of artwork that featured a number (optional) of aspects of what we had covered over the previous 4 days.
Not all pieces were fully resolved, but the degree of individual response, thinking and choice of medium(s) indicated to me that the group had come a long way in 5 days.
Each of the group’s final artwork required an artist’s statement to be displayed alongside. Compiling such a statement was indeed a major task to set, but each member rose to the occasion.
There is a strong possibility of this class meeting again next February for a 3-day workshop.
Overall, the introduction of a beginners’ workshop was truly vindicated and I congratulate the ARTescape committee for their foresight and thank them for giving me the opportunity to teach such an enthusiastic group.
In my next blog post I will discuss the merits of visual diaries.