David Harrison, Do You Believe in Magic, sellotape sculpture
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David Harrison, Back to the Ark, wood and sellotape sculpture
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David Harrison, Do You Believe in Magic (rabbit detail), sellotape sculpture
The Brit School won a Guardian/Smudgeflux digital art prize this year with a dance-based animation created by 15, Yr 12, AVCE Art & Design students. This cross-curricular project, collaborating with the Dance department, began with filming 2 dancers who had created a dance based on a photograph by Lewis W. Hine called Child Labour in the United States part of a dance project based on photographs that changed the world:
It was these two aspects, the political and emotional, of the photographs which instigated a class discussion. The results of this discussion were recorded. From these notes the dancers undertook a guided improvisation based on the motions mechanic of the tasks the children in the photographs were carrying out, as well as the emotional impact this maltreatment had on them.
The movements the dancers perform are based on the theme of mechanical and repetitive routine. Much of the movement is physically demanding and at times dangerous, as was the work these children undertook. (Sarah Francis, Dance Tutor)
The film footage was then edited in Premiere and imported into Flash. The final animation was made as part of the dance final major project for their Dance BTEC - a multi-media show including live music, film & animation projections, and every style of dance imaginable from Gum Boot to Ballet, called Recollections.
To see the animation go to the Guardians website: http://education.guardian.co.uk/gallery
After winning the award, the BRIT School Visual Arts and Design students worked for a week with David Harrison, an award-winning artist who recently exhibited at The Whitechapel Gallery in an exhibition called East End Academy http://www.whitechapel.org/content844.html.
David Harrison introduced the group to his work, which are highly symbolic and decorative installations making great use of recycled, or found, materials. Together they decided to create a project based on the theme club culture, and the students were asked to collect a variety of materials over the summer, which would be used to develop into an installation over a week. Everyone set to work producing crazy glittering models, images, sculptures and furniture for the piece. The production time took 4 days and on the last day the work was suspended and assembled in a large performance space. To add to the effect, club-style lighting, and an abstract sound sequence were created to accompany the work, which then became a kind of performance.
Sound bites from Student evaluations of Artist in Residency
"Seeing an artist get so fired up about materials in front of us was really inspirational."
"I enjoyed the amount of freedom in the project."
"A very illuminating experience into the art of installation."
"Project allowed me to explore my creative skills."
"The installation had so many individual items manufactured by students; the eccentricity and uniqueness of all the trinkets and mobiles was idyllic to the club theme."
"The project presented me with an extended insight into the artistic process and creative thought."
"provided a realistic experience of a professional project."
"He (David Harrison) gave us an insight into what can be achieved with basic everyday objects - e.g. sellotape - and was enthusiastic in getting his hands on our rubbish."
"Our audience grew and in a way became part of our installation."
"It was very experimental and totally different from anything else that we had done before."
David Harrison, Do You Believe in Magic (cat detail), sellotape sculpture
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David Harrison, Fish Owl, sellotape sculpture
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Assembling the final piece
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