On Saturday 28 November, the volunteer programme were delighted to welcome 22 pupils from Caldew School to complete a day of ‘Social Action’ at Tullie House as the culmination of their National Citizen Scheme Award.
Nicky and John tell us about their day at Tullie and the work towards their award.
Last Saturday we completed our social action project at Tullie House Museum. As a group we developed and participated in three activities. The focus of the day was thinking about visitors from the community with visual impairment. This meant that one group created a sensory space in the garden, and another group researched and wrote scripts then recorded audio ‘labels’ for the Social History gallery. Finally the third and smallest group produced an NCS display, highlighting what the NCS programme involves and has to offer all young people.
To give you some background, the NCS stands the National Citizen Service award and is open for all 16-17 year olds across England and Wales. It is a journey through a series of phases with its ethos being based on:
- Social mix
- Social action
All of us who complete the NCS journey are awarded with a certificate signed by David Cameron (prime minister). However the skills and knowledge that we gain on the route are extremely valuable to wherever our futures lead.
We are all year 12 pupils from Caldew School. The start of the course saw us go to Lockerbie Manor, an outdoor pursuits centre where we did a range of activities designed to build up our confidence and communication skills. Then over the Autumn half term we visited various places within Carlisle and improved our understanding of the local community. We also took inspiration from the local organisations which eventually led us to taking part in a social action project at Tullie House Museum.
Davie, one of the students summed their wish to participate perfectly saying “I’m here to give something back to the community” a sentiment echoed by all the students.
John Sander the NCS Co-ordinator from Carlisle United had these further comments to make:
“I am thrilled that the group have chosen to work in partnership with the city’s leading tourist attraction. The confidence and inspiration they will gain as this project develops will not only have a big effect on their futures but it will be something that they will always remember. Hopefully their endeavours both in raising the funding and then working at the museum will also have a long, lasting and beneficial effect on the city and people of Carlisle”
John Sander added:
“For most of these sixth formers who attend Caldew School the NCS journey has been a life changing experience. This relatively new government initiative has improved their employability and allowed the young people to build friendships and memories on both the away and home residential experiences that will last for ever. The work at Tullie House is now the icing on the cake that allows all these students to graduate”
What Nicky and John didn’t mention in their text above is that they also carried out fundraising that meant Tullie House was able to benefit from £200 worth of plants for the garden and further £600 for the museum. It is my intention to see these funds used to continue the work you have started.
I was very pleased to host these students and enable them to complete their award. In addition, they have made a real contribution to their museum and created superb resources for visitors to enjoy for years to come. It was a privilege for me work with these students who gave up their Saturday and worked solidly throughout the day to achieve their aims – even in the rain! Well done and thank you all!.
Claire – Volunteer Co-ordinator
As our ARTIST ROOMS Anselm Kiefer exhibition enters its final weeks we are unveiling some brilliant creative responses from groups that we have been working with – you can see these in the flesh by visiting Tullie House.
Starting in the reception area we have an impressive display of torsos created during workshops with NACRO and Carlisle Key – two local organisations working with young people.
The workshops explored identity a key theme in Kiefer’s works. The young people thought about what makes us who we are, and how much of that is linked to a ‘national identity’.
They range from being a celebration of the music they enjoy, the colours that make them smile, or a tribute to lost loved ones.
The Tullie Toddlers were even inspired by the work of of our young people and created their own mannequin!
As well as the mannequins our Community Room is playing host to a large scale mixed media piece created by visitors to our Kiefer inspired Museums at Night event. The Mob Masterpiece uses some of Anselm Kiefer methods and media, and was created over the evening.
Many hands make art work!
The work our family visitors created during February Half Term inspired by the exhibition is also still on display in the Community Room.
As well as art works some of the young people we work with have also developed an innovative new gallery trail. Kiefer2Music explores the use of music and song lyrics as a way to express their thoughts and feelings about Kiefer’s work. You can check out the blog here https://kiefertomusic.wordpress.com/ or use your phone or tablet in the exhibition to experience the music and art works together!
That isn’t all – we have one more exciting response project to come. Local school James Rennie have been working with Prism Arts to develop an exhibition of creative responses to the Kiefer exhibition which will be on display in our garden from the 27 May!
Tullie House has teamed up with Nacro and Carlisle Key to work with local young people on a project inspired by the work of Anselm Kiefer, whose works feature in our current ARTIST ROOMS Anselm Kiefer exhibition. Catherine our Young People Coordinator gives us an update of what they’ve been up to.
In the workshops the young people have been using mixed media on canvas to explore their own identities; what is it that makes us who we are, and how much of it is linked to a ‘national identity’?
The young people have noticed that Kiefer uses a lot of different materials, and also includes text in some of his work, so during the workshops we have tried to achieve a similar effect by using collage, paint, stencils, and newsprint altogether on one piece.
They have been encouraged to use pictures, words, and phrases which bear some significance to their lives, and that represent them in some way. The groups have also been re-visiting, adding to, and reusing pieces that they have started in earlier sessions, which is also something that Kiefer does with his own work.
The groups have been working with local musician Steven Pearson to explore the use of music and song lyrics as a way of expressing their thoughts and feelings about Kiefer’s work. It can sometimes be hard to communicate personal responses to art work, and using another reference can make it easier. Steven has done some sessions which involve layering sounds, and mixing music in a similar way that Kiefer layers materials and mixes different artistic mediums.
The young people will be sharing a ‘musical tour’ with museum visitors, which through the use of QR codes will direct people in the gallery to songs on their ‘kiefer2music’ blog (coming soon), where the young people have chosen music they feel links to pieces of Kiefer’s artwork.
The groups are working towards a larger-scale creative response to the exhibition, which will go on display in the museum reception in time for our Museums at Night event of Thursday 14 May, where the young people will be able to share the work they have been doing.
The project is supported by funding from ARTIST ROOMS who aim to engage ‘new’ young audiences (13 to 25 years old) across the UK with the ARTIST ROOMS collection and artists, in a meaningful and enjoyable way.
Earlier this week, Georgie Clough opened her first Tullie House exhibition in THe Shed to great interest. The Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, Penrith pupil has already received great acclaim nationally. Georgie and her exhibition is described by our colleague and Young People Co-ordinator Catherine:
‘Georgie won a national competition which resulted in her art work featuring in an exhibition at the National Gallery and an appearance on The One Show. She is a very talented young artist, and I hope that you all get a chance to take a look at her pictures.
We had a lovely celebration event this evening [Monday 19 January the pictures are included below], attended by Mike Zeller from Radio Cumbria who will run a piece about THe Shed at about 8.55 tomorrow morning. The exhibition has also had two nice write-ups in the Cumberland News and Carlisle Living if you get a chance to see them.’
If you are a young artist in Cumbria, and would like to share your artwork with us too, please contact Catherine through email@example.com
As this work was installed it meant that the Video Shed was wheeled into store again for a few weeks. Thank you everyone who made a video, we had over 60 in total. I’m currently revewing them, and all that we can show, we will show on the television screen in THe Shed. So come and see the who made it!