With the support of Headmaster, Dean Dell’Oro, the 2019 FA@H Exhibition was set up several days earlier than in previous years, which enabled more than 1000 students to come through the doors of Memorial Hall to view the work on show.
The exhibition also proved a useful resource for staff to address two of the four key Learning and Assessment areas in the Visual Arts Curriculum – Arts Responses and Reflection and Arts in Society.
Exhibition activities included class visits from Year 1 through to ATAR Visual Arts students; curator-led tours; specially written worksheets for both Junior and Senior school students; and an artist talk and demonstration by Mt Barker artist Carly le Cerf to the boarding houses.
Memorial Hall was also open during recess and lunch, allowing interested boys to visit the exhibition many times over just to get a second or third look at work that captured their imagination
A Picture Says A Thousand Words
Hale Junior School librarian, Vanessa Hallett set up her class of Year 4 boys around Martin Jaines’ sculpture Surfer and asked them to look deeply and see what they really, really saw when they looked at it.
Answers ranged from the literal – an engine, a car, recycling, junk(!); to the evocative – sea sickness, happiness, fun times, summer, Scarborough Beach, holidays; to a real appreciation of the endeavour behind such a construction – engineering, hard work, creativity, innovation, persistence. What brilliant observations from these young boys!
Brine House Purchase
The Hale School Boarding Houses from Year 7 to 12 were treated to a post dinner evening tour of the exhibition where they could peruse the collection under lights. This gave the boys of Brine House (Years 7-8) some time to collaborate and decide on the group’s annual art purchase.
Determined that the ‘Brine House Art Collection’ should expand beyond 2D art, and find a more sculptural piece, glass artist Anne Sorensen was delighted to hear that Abandoned Farm House was chosen by the boys. Plans were immediately afoot to craft a special nook in the corridors of Brine House to display the work to its full advantage.
With many students coming from farming communities across Western Australia, it’s easy to see how this artwork was so popular amongst the boarders, taking them to a place that was at once familiar and evocative of home.
Artist Talk – Carly le Cerf
Mt Barker artist, Carly le Cerf was invited to present an evening talk to the boys of the Boarding Houses – all 180 of them!
Carly spoke about the motivation behind her art and demonstrated the encaustic technique that she uses, applying a mixture of wax, resin and pigment to the painting surface, after which she scrapes back and applies oils to create effect.
Not expecting much of an outcome, there was an audible gasp from the boys when Carly turned her work around to reveal the end result. A group of boys then joined her on the tools to try the technique for themselves.
Writing About Art
Constructing a visual analysis of art and images is an important skill, and in a world more and more bombarded by the ‘visual’ this is a task actually performed by all of us at a subconscious level every day.
Using worksheets developed by FA@H Curator, Lee Kinsella and Junior School Art Teacher, Lisa Hakkinen, students were encouraged to begin the process of a formal visual analysis of their favourite work of art at FA@H.
The activity was embraced by Junior School students, who were quick to identify the works that struck a chord with them.
Following through in the classroom, Hale Junior School Art Teacher, Lisa Hakkinen set her Year 6 students the task of completing their visual analysis assignment on a work of art exhibited at the 2019 Fine Art @ Hale Exhibition. Click on the artworks below to read the visual analyses provided by some of our insightful Year 6 boys.
Ranging from Service Learning volunteers helping set up the exhibition and working in the café over the weekend, to the many 100s of students who came through the doors, the level of student engagement at the 2019 FA@H Exhibition was outstanding.
Looking at art, engaging with art, having an opinion about art and writing about art, all featured strongly, with student responses confirming that the many hours of volunteer work taken to pull the exhibition together, together with the support of Hale School staff across the board, was time well spent.
The Fine Art @ Hale committee is delighted that next year’s exhibition will once again be used as a student resource prior to Opening Night. We offer our sincere thanks to Mr Dell’Oro, and the Hale School teaching, boarding and support staff who have embraced the exhibition and the opportunities it brings to all on campus.