Art and Design
The school has three dedicated art rooms, which enable all boys to increase and broaden their experience in both two-dimensional and three-dimensional Art and Design.
It is the art department policy that every effort should be made to realise the creative potential in each boy; encouraging him to develop practical skills; to gain independence and increase his capacity for visual awareness.
The history of art has an important role to play in all courses from year 7 upwards. The study of historical and contemporary artists’ work is an integral part of their theme based practical work.
Skinners’ Art at Key Stage Three
All KS3 students follow an art course, which helps to build confidence and stimulate curiosity. We aim to teach the boys to think creatively and make independent choices.
Throughout years 7, 8 and 9 students will work on developing their own visual language and have the opportunity to experiment with a wide range of materials and processes including drawing, painting, printing, collage, photography, ceramics and graphics. They will be introduced to art and design From across the world, focusing on a variety of cultures and approaches.
Students generally complete 3 projects each year and follow themes such as ‘Journeys’, ‘Tractability,’ and ‘Myself’. In all three years we aim to promote personal investigation and study a variety of artists. Students are encouraged to talk, write about and respond to the art they experience, in an individual and independent Way.
We study the Edexcel unendorsed Art and Design course. This is made up of 2 units, the first is coursework based where the themes studied are chosen by the department, the second is a themed assignment chosen by the board. The following are examples of themes set by Edexcel: Barriers, I/Me/Mine; Concealed and Revealed and Surfaces.
In addition, we run a day life class in year 11, tutored by visiting artists. We arrange visits to national and local galleries and other appropriate venues.
GCSE students are encouraged to work at lunchtime and in teacher-led after school sessions.
Student work has to have been completed under ‘controlled conditions’ starting in the classroom and led by their teacher:
- This will be accomplished by studying the meaning or interpretations of the title set, looking for interesting visual references to stimulate ideas.
- Early ideas are based on observation work in photography and mark making methods.
- Research into historical and contemporary artists, will be undertaken and used to inspire creativity, develop techniques and understand the links between culture and artistic interpretations.
- Processes and disciplines such as drawing, painting, printing, photography, 3D work, computer editing and film can be covered.
- A final piece/s will be developed in one or more of the disciplines and this should be directly influenced by the development from the theme first set and linked to the artists and cultures studied.
Four assessment criteria have to be met, these are:
“AO1: develop their ideas through investigations informed by contextual and other sources, demonstrating analytical and cultural understanding.”
“AO2: refine their ideas through experimenting and selecting appropriate resources, media, materials, techniques and processes.”
“AO3: record ideas, observations and insights relevant to their intentions in visual and/or other forms.”
“AO4: present a personal, informed and meaningful response demonstrating analytical and critical understanding, realising intentions and, where appropriate, making connections between visual, written, oral or other elements.”
A level students study the unendorsed Edexcel Art and Design course, which is split into AS and A2 and follows a similar format to the GCSE exam syllabus.
The following topics have been set in the past:
“ICONS”, “JOURNEYS”, “TRANSITIONS”, “OBJECTS AND OBJECTIVITIES”, “LINKS AND CONNECTIONS, “SANCTUARY” AND”DISCORD”.
The Sixth Form Art Room is in a separate area from the junior classes.
All sixth form students have their own work station.
As a basis for self motivation and confidence, pupils are encouraged to continue to work in the Art room at AS and A2 level during private study and in their free time.
Students opting for Art related courses at Colleges or Universities are aided with portfolio preparation for interviews by their teachers.
We arrange for past pupils and practising artists to visit and give the students an insight into the practical world of art beyond school.
A foreign residential trip is organised annually for the sixth formers. In the past we have visited Paris, Rome, Berlin and Barcelona.
Students can opt to attend life classes organised by the department.
RESIDENTIAL VISITS FOR THE LOWER AND UPPER SIXTH FORMERS, are arranged to coincide with the start of their exam project or coursework. The visits are primarily to gain inspiration for the start of their project. The students will get a feel for the culture of the city, visit Art Galleries to study Artists, who will in turn act as inspiration for the development of their projects. They will be expected to make sketches, notes and a photographic reference of their visit.
Every year in addition the students visit the Royal Academy Summer exhibition, the Tate Modern and National Portrait gallery.
Each year we have two exhibitions; one for GCSE and one for A-level work. The exhibitions are open to students, parents and invited guests. We have work ranging from drawing, painting, mixed media, prints, photography, sculpture, installations and film.
Other artistic activities in the School include the designing and making of sets for school drama productions and the exhibition of students’ work around the school.
In recent years the Parents Association has enabled us to not only extensively fit out the junior art rooms with new tables and stools, but also has provided us with an interactive white board, digital cameras, a projector, and a sewing machine to develop our textile work, for which we are extremely grateful.
Click here to visit the Skinners’ Art Department Flickr photostream. Showcasing past and present student work from all year groups. Please visit on a regularly basis as work is updated fortnightly.