Articulation Discovery Day

Last week, fifteen students from our art and design courses went to The Sainsbury Centre for an Articulation Discovery Day. This is the National Gallery’s nationwide public speaking initiative for young people:

“Articulation Discovery Days are free workshops for KS5 students to help develop their critical analysis, research and public speaking skills. … During this one-day workshop students will:

  • Explore art works through personal observation, discussion and primary research
  • Be encouraged to think independently, analyse information, and ask informed questions
  • Learn how to conquer nerves, physically prepare, and successfully deliver a presentation to large audiences
  • Meet with and interview art world professionals

At the end of the day each student will deliver their research and personal responses in short group presentations to the workshop leaders and their fellow students. Students do not need any prior experience, all skills required will be introduced on the day.” (National Gallery, 2022)

Here, Ethan and Grace describe their experiences:

“The trip to the Sainsbury Centre of Visual Arts (SCVA) was a very fulfilling and inspiring day. We explored various different concepts of art, ranging from different sources of fine art and acrylic based pieces, as well as relics or sculptures from the past all entailing a unique and individual style, many of which were widely cultural or tradition based. We were also given the opportunity to improve our understanding of background information surrounding specific pieces of art. For example, one of the pieces known as “Dance As Though the Ancestors Are Watching” [by Sonny Assu] is a fairly recent piece of work that reflected ancient traditions of native tribes. Each piece of art was also very different from one another, most of which being very abstract, leaving them widely open to interpretation. Overall, the day provided a unique experience that helped with the development of opinionated ideas about different art forms that I would highly recommend for anyone interested in abstract or culturally based art.” (Ethan, A Level Art, Craft and Design, Year 12)

“I really enjoyed the day and working with another school showed me new ways of thinking. The presentations were my favourite part because each group focused on different themes, ideas, aspects of the piece, etc. and discussed the work in different ways. There was lots of freedom in exploring the Sainsbury Centre as well.” (Grace, A Level Fine Art, Year 13)

Mrs Wright organised the trip: “It was an incredibly valuable day for our students on articulating meaningful and personal opinions in response to art. The students worked in small groups to research a chosen piece of art from the SCVA collection and, with some support from event staff, led a Q&A session aimed at the SCVA curation team. Students worked on their presentation and public speaking skills – learning how to talk with confidence and knowledge, with their final outcome presentation given to a group of 30 people. At the beginning of the day, almost all of the students thought this would not be possible! Everyone was impressed with our students’ maturity, enquiry and thoughtfulness.”

Click on any of the images below to enlarge them.