“Seeing comes before words… It is seeing which establishes our place in the surrounding world… The relation between what we see and what we know is never settled.” John Berger
We want to inspire each Art student to be able to consider their response to the surrounding world and to explain their connection to it.
It is the Art Department’s aim to offer a challenging and exciting course, allowing students to experiment with a broad range of ideas, materials and techniques. We aim to encourage and support each individual to have the independence to explore fully their creative potential and to problem-solve imaginatively.
Art in Year 7, 8 and 9
In the first three years at Eltham, each form is divided into two groups and spends half of each year in both 2D and 3D studios aiming to develop in all pupils:
• creative, imaginative , intellectual and intuitive powers;
• investigative, analytical, experimental, practical, technical and expressive skills, aesthetic understanding and critical judgement;
• understanding the interrelationships between art and design and an awareness of the contexts in which they operate;
• knowledge and understanding of Art and design in contemporary society and in other times and cultures.
Drawing is an essential part of the course and the students will be introduced to a large range of methods and reasons to draw. The students use sketchbooks at home and in lessons, as a way of documenting their ideas as each project develops. Every project will involve considering the work of other artists and students are introduced to a broad range of materials and learn new techniques. They are expected to aim high, to reach an understanding of the material in hand and are then encouraged to present their own creative response.
The GCSE course allows the students to extend their skills and understanding in the subject. The students begin to learn in Year 10 and through Year 11 how to work independently. The majority of the time is spent producing work that will be submitted as coursework and these projects are very much directed by the individual students, focusing on where their interests and strengths lie as an artist.
Students should make regular visits to London galleries as a way of supporting their own practice. The more Art they see the more sophisticated their work will become. Furthermore, the ability to analyse and evaluate their work and the work of others is a large part of how students are assessed at GCSE.
AS and A2
AS and A2 students will produce practical and critical/contextual work in one or more areas including painting, drawing, mixed-media, sculpture, land art, installation, printmaking, film, animation, television, video and photography.
Every A level student is expected to attend an after school session each Monday from 4.15 – 6.15pm, when different activities are organised. There are visits from artists, workshops introducing new techniques and materials, and of course life drawing.
The AS course begins with a Land Art trip, which is an opportunity for the students to make work in direct response to the landscape. They can use photography, painting, drawing, or they could make sculptures using the materials of the land, take casts and rubbings. The students are provided throughout the course with a good introduction to more advanced processes, techniques and skills. By A2 the students are focused fully on their own interests and as a result become more specialist in their approach to the subject.
There is a study trip organised for the first term of each year when the students visit a city to appreciate the Art and to make their own work on site. Previous groups have visited Amsterdam, Venice, Paris, Florence, Barcelona, Prague and New York.