Young artists on display at National Gallery

| 28/06/2017
CNS Local Life

Students’ artwork at the “Synergy” exhibition

(CNS Local Life): The National Gallery of the Cayman Islands (NGCI) has opened an exhibition to showcase students’ artwork from six Walkers Art Club. The NGCI after-school art clubs have benefited about 100 participants, comprising pre-schoolers, primary and secondary students, Cayman Brac students, teens who are studying for their final exams, and young people with special needs.

As the school year draws to a close, students are showcasing highlights from the many projects they have been working on through the Walkers-sponsored clubs.

This year’s NGCI education intern, Jessica Ebanks, has curated the exhibition, “Synergy!”, located in the NGCI Dart Auditorium Community Gallery. More than 300 pieces of art are on display showcasing a cross-section of styles.

“Synergy is defined as ‘the combined power of a group of things when they are working together that is greater than the total power achieved by each working separately’,” Ebanks explained in an NGCI press release.

“I think this perfectly summarises the spirit of the Walkers Art Clubs. Students from various schools, backgrounds, and neighbourhoods come together in these clubs to learn, experiment, and create together. To me, that’s the true power of art – it unites us through passion and creativity, allowing us to connect with one another in a beautiful way.

“The students have shown tremendous commitment and growth over the course of the year, and this exhibition is a wonderful showcase of all that they have achieved, individually and together.”

Tim Buckley, partner at Walkers, said that the law firm has worked closed with the National Gallery since 2002 on a variety of children’s arts initiatives. “The Walkers Art Club is a creative, engaging, and accessible after-school programme which enables students of different age groups from both public and private schools to meet and interact through art,” he said.

“We are very proud of the programme and delighted to be invited to open the fourth annual Walkers Art Club Exhibition, titled ‘Synergy!’ We are looking forward to seeing the artwork on display and witnessing first-hand the remarkable talent of Cayman’s young artists.”

Now in its 12th year, the Walkers Art Club remains in high demand amongst children and parents. Tanya Whiteside, NGCI operations and programmes manager, explained the benefits of this initiative. “We aim to develop talent and cultivate cultural pride and awareness using visual arts from the National Gallery various exhibitions,” she said.

“We have watched the Walkers art students connect and identify with local artists and become more confident critical thinkers throughout the year. Not all attendants will pursue further qualifications in the arts, but we are certain we are producing creative innovators of tomorrow.”

Through a combination of hands-on instruction and individual experimentation with art foundation principles, children learn techniques, art history, self-confidence and how to form and articulate opinions about the work they are creating.

In addition to individual art projects, students work collaboratively, which connects participants to one another across socio-cultural divides and encourages them to appreciate the unique abilities of their peers.

“We commend Walkers for their long-term commitment to this programme and are grateful for their ongoing support,” added NGCI director Natalie Urquhart.

“Synergy!” runs until 7 July and admission to the exhibition is free.

For more information about Walkers Art Clubs, call (945-8111) or email NGCI

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Category: Visual Arts

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