Creative Exchange, Fun and Learning in Week 3

Week 3 of the Arts Across Learning Festival brought creativity, challenge and learning to our all important pupil participants, but also to their teachers, the workshop artists and venue staff, and to us, the management and front of house team!

Out and about this week we dropped in on Paper Pop, an interactive and storytelling workshop led by Kelly-Anne Cairns and Melodie Stacey, where Primary 2 from Brimmond Primary School made beautiful flying butterflies and birds:

And then with the P7s from Ferryhill Primary School as they learned about living in the Arctic from the diaries of David Cardno, a 13-year old stowaway in 1866 who went on to spend his life as a whaler in the Arctic. The Special Collections team at the Sir Duncan Rice Library were able to show the pupils the actual diaries as an inspiration, before visual artist Tracey Smith helped them replicate the whaler’s activity of scrimshaw using screen printing methods. Cake for anyone who knows how the term ‘sciving’  came into use? (Clue is in the last paragraph!)

The end of day exchanges at the CreativiTEA Rooms have been fun and inspiring with the added bonus of tea and cake making it a great place to wind down or gear up. Please pop in Monday – Thursday next week which is sadly the final week of the Festival. If you can’t make it please join in our conversations on the blog – we would love to hear from you!

Tell us about your experiences of the workshops, your ideas about creativity, or who inspired you (or otherwise) and even share tips about how to make the most of the workshops. You can also comment on any of the themes which came up during the week – see whistle stop tour below.

This week we were joined in the Tea Rooms by lots of festival artists and partners including Tawona Sithole, Anthony Schrag, Michelle from Aberdeen Performing Arts, Sara Sheridan and Emma Snellgrove, Aberdeen City Archives, Gordon Highlanders Museum, Adventure Aberdeen and Fly Right Dance Company.  At Thursday’s Specials Board session Tracy Smith described her work and experiences working as a freelance artist with McManus Galleries in Dundee, sharing the ups and downs of her career as well as lots of practical tips and advice for emerging artists and students to take away. We had a packed house of students and teachers alongside our other commissioned artists and writers Kelly-Anne Cairns and Melodie Stacey, Linda Cracknell, Little Fawn Caravan Theatre and the M6 Theatre Company.

A whistle stop tour of the key themes which came up during the week:

Strong partnership approach is essential; Process of delivering a workshop is a learning experience for everyone; How getting it wrong is normal; What is the balance between enforcing discipline and encouraging focus; How do you create enough space for spontaneity and fluidity to take the workshop in other directions; Devising workshops so that the artist leaves having opened up a space for further activity and exploration; How Place affects us…..

There’s only a week left of the festival, and the blog, so let us know what you are interested in and what you want to hear more about and we’ll try our best to cover it in the remaining posts.


Arts Across Learning Festival: Week 2

A few pics from week 2 of the Arts Across Learning Festival as we head into week 3! And in the CreativitTEA Rooms this week:

Monday 10th March: Anthony Schrag; Tuesday 11th March: Aberdeen Performing Arts; Wednesday 12th March Tawona Sithole; Thursday 13th March: Tracey Smith – all of whom are also delivering festival workshops this week either in cultural venues or schools in Aberdeen City, along with Visible Fictions, Fly Right Dance Company, Fiona Milligan Rennie, Little Fawn Caravan Theatre Company, Linda Cracknell, Kelly-Anne Cairns, Melodie Stacey, Emma Snellgrove and Sara Sheridan!

Arts Across Learning Festival 2014: Week 1

A few pics from the first week of the 2014 Arts Across Learning Festival! Looking forward to week 2 getting underway on Monday 3rd March, with a fantastic list of events including Catherine Wheels Theatre Company, Alec Miller, Aberdeen Performing Arts, Soundsites, Nancy Fuller, Jess Smith and Ewan Cameron all going into city schools, Robert Aitken at the Gordon Highlanders Museum and Fiona Milligan Rennie at the Aberdeen Maritime Museum. And of course the CreativiTEA Rooms every day from 4 – 6 pm  at Aberdeen Arts Centre! See you there….