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Rhodes Avenue Primary School, London, 13 December 2017

16 Dec 2017

In my childhood memories the last day of any school term was ‘toy day‘. It was a day when kids were allowed to play with fun things rather having the usual lessons. When Esther and I returned to Rhodes Avenue Primary School this week for their last life drawing evening this term, and found the group had relocated from a classroom to the main hall containing gym equipment, we felt a similar excitement.

We found two platforms of different heights, each of which had room for one or both of us, and there was a soft multicoloured dome we could clamber on. We would be able to enjoy the invention of new poses, but we were also here to work. The group’s tutor, Rosie, set the pose times and give a little direction – for example, whether we should be close or apart, or asking if poses already underway could be held for longer.

We started with energetic poses of 2-minutes, 3-minutes and 5-minutes, then paused to look at the works created before resuming with gentle poses: an embrace upon the dome for 5-minutes, followed by separated bodies holding hands for 15-minutes. After this, because it’s nearly Christmas, we had a break with the 11 artists to share flasks of cider, bottles of wine and trays of mince pies. All very civilised, of course.

When everybody was sufficiently refreshed, Esther and I shifted from the centre of the hall, on to a stage bedecked with the trappings of a nativity play. Carefully we covered a tiny throne, then posed on it for what started as 15 but ended up 25-minutes, before a 20-minute finale. As this group continues to grow in numbers and confidence I hope they can stick with this new venue for their art – certainly it seemed we all enjoyed it.

From → Art

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