Learning through art, 2015

June 23, 2015 - September 30, 2015

Participants

Artistas - LTA -2015
Ainhoa Ortells, Jorge Rubio, Naia del Castillo, Maider López, Iñaki Gracenea, Elssie Ansareo

THE SCHOOLS

20 schoolchildren from primary 2, ES Otxarkoaga, Bilbao.
Teachers: Begoña Larrinaga and Aroa Goiri.
Artist: Elssie Ansareo.
“I really liked making art, I love doing things with Elssie.”

Pupils from the Otxarkoaga School

20 schoolchildren from primaries 2 and 3, ES Birjinetxe, Bilbao.
Teacher: María Jesús Martínez.
Artist: Naia del Castillo.
“We learned to make things using different materials. Together, we made a giant egg and lots of animals. We also learned that, if we work together and help each other out, things come out nicer. We learned from our mistakes and we realized that, when we goof off, things don’t turn out well and all our work can go to waste.  We love working with Naia because we have great fun.”

Pupils from the Birjinetxe School

“We started with great excitement, enthusiastic to discover the project, although we weren’t very sure how it would go. Our intention was, by means of a common project, to work on group cohesion. Throughout the sessions, the boys and girls showed interest in the project and worked enthusiastically on the activities proposed. The pupils demonstrated pride throughout the process.”

Teachers from the Birjinetxe School

30 pupils from primary 5, ES Kueto, Sestao.
Teachers: Luján Mejías and Desirée Fernández.
Artist: Jorge Rubio.
“We had a lovely trip to the museum, our pupils learned a lot and started to appreciate works of art. We had a great time and we thought it was a lovely experience.”

Teachers from the Kueto School

25 pupils from primary 4, ES Arrateko Andramari, Eibar.
Teacher: Maite Rescalvo.
Artist: Maider López.
“We really enjoyed ourselves with Maider López. We’d love to do it again.”

Pupils from the ES Arrateko Andramari, Eibar

29 pupils from primary 6, ES Ramiro de Maeztu, Oyón.
Teachers: Iñigo Beristain, Diana Oleagotia and Myriam Ruiz
Artist: Iñaki Gracenea.
“What I liked the most was going to the Guggenheim and making the stones with plaster. I got the first one wrong, and the second one too, but the third time it came out great because I made it with a friend. After that I would have made 50 more; I love it.”

Pupil from the Ramiro de Maeztu School

“It was a very positive experience. In our case, it meant that students enrolled in different language programs within the school system had to share and work together to bring the project to a successful conclusion. This program sums up quite well what I think a school should be: a place full of fun, interesting challenges and experiences that contribute to social cohesion and produce individuals with inquiring minds and greater equality, freedom, and critical thinking skills.”

Teacher at the Ramiro de Maeztu School

20 pupils from primary 1, ES Lamuza, Llodio.
Teacher: Itxaso Betes.
Artist: Ainhoa Ortells.
“It was all very, very lovely. When we went to the museum we saw very lovely and special works, it was interesting. And at school we had great fun making and decorating clothes.”

Pupils from the Lamuza School

“It has been an enriching experience. The children found the way we worked with this content very pleasing, and this has kept them extremely motivated. Also, they all felt they were capable of creating beautiful things (the artist’s attitude contributed tremendously), so they have strengthened their self-esteem.”

Teacher from the Lamuza School

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THE ARTISTS

Naia del Castillo

“This year, the students at the Birjinetxe School developed an art project from start to finish. Working together, they, their teachers, and I chose a topic that we had studied and read up on, the difference between viviparous and oviparous animals. Our three-dimensional creation focused on their gestation method: in the maternal womb and inside the egg. The teachers' intention with this project was to help the class bond as a group and encourage students to have a respectful, positive attitude towards their own work and that of others.

From my point of view, this experience is important because the students not only assimilated knowledge about a topic in their curriculum, but they also learned to use new tools and materials, to persevere and stick with an idea, explore their personal vision, evaluate, take risks, notice their mistakes, work as a team, value their opinions, and relate to contemporary art.”

Iñaki Gracenea

“This year we explored the idea of the landscape from different perspectives, from macro to micro. We took a step back from our immediate environment to see the immensity that surrounds us, and we drew closer so we wouldn't overlook the subtleties. We painted aerial views and collected small stones: vestiges of what envelops and surrounds us, traces that gave us access to new ways of seeing and understanding our environment, footprints that we've translated through art. Today they are reminders, signs that something has happened, signs of our presence, the marks we've left on a constantly shifting landscape.”

Ainhoa Ortells

“This year we worked with the seasons: we learned to distinguish their salient characteristics, we observed and recorded the effects of each season on our environment, and we examined how our choice of clothing and accessories changes with the seasons. By comparing ourselves to the person alongside us, we discovered that there are different ways of facing the unique changes that each season brings. And throughout the process, we used art as an educational tool, accompanied by 20 six and seven-year-olds.

In childhood, imagination is usually boundless and planning is of little use, and although some might view this as a negative thing, in the world of creativity it's generally quite enriching. This attitude inspires us artists to constantly ‘play’ with our imaginations; in a way, it puts us in the children's shoes, and this creative game inevitably becomes a group project. We're all on the same level, the adults and teachers included, because for us it also represents an opportunity to learn.”

Elssie Ansareo

“During this school year we worked on a theme that is common to all of us: feelings. We explored the sensations we experience when we are happy, afraid, surprised, sad, or angry. We then took the project to the next level when we started drawing connections between feelings, colors, and forms, and that led to infinite possibilities, always starting with the smallest elements and building upward from there until we discovered that together they form a forest teeming with emotions, which grows day after day and is constantly evolving and open to change.

This very theme, inherent to the human condition, is an important part of my own artistic work; working together to discover new ways of experiencing and expressing emotions was enriching for me, and at the same time it gave all the participants a chance to create a work of art, teaching us all something new.”

Maider López

“Six colored boxes are scattered across the playground. Suddenly one of the boxes moves; I'm not sure if my eyes were playing tricks on me or if it really did move. After a while, the orange box begins to move on its own, crossing the playground. The impossibility of what we're seeing makes us smile. The students, concealed inside the boxes, are following the instructions given by their classmates on the outside.

It's been a year full of enthusiasm and discoveries, but if I had to criticize one thing, I'd say that we worked too hard. I set out with the aim of prioritizing the act of discovery, listening and talking, being and allowing things to take their natural course. But at the end of the school year I was seized by the determination to continue the program, and I ended up putting work before everything else. But to Markel, Naia, Gorka, Meryem, and all the rest, I'd say this: I hope I've given you something to take away from this experience, the rich sediments of a year in which we've learned concepts related to color, form (and its relationship with space), movement, and the potential of cooperative teamwork.”

Jorge Rubio

“It must be hard to understand how every person who ever existed or exists is and will always be different from everyone else. I myself don't understand it. In the same way, every year, every class, every subject, every group, every drawing, every line has an identity that makes it unique... And this year was no exception: the thirty artists with whom I shared experiences at the Kueto Public School in Sestao were unlike anyone else, which makes them unique.

Aesthetic possibilities, expressive alphabets, graphic representations, recording and manipulating the environment were the cards in our deck, the cards we played with, shuffled, and dealt. In this game no one loses, not even those who aren't interested in playing, because while everyone else plays, they watch the game; after a while, their attitude changes, and later they come to understand the game, until finally a spot becomes available (there's always room for one more) and they ask to be dealt into the game. If they can't play that day, they'll go home and think about the plays they saw and how they might have been done... This is the only case in which a gambling addiction (a mental derangement triggered by art) could be construed as something positive.

The items exhibited are part of what we’ve achieved over the year, but I think it’s much more important to look at what we haven’t done, at what’s still to be done, the ideas that arose while developing the works, the possibilities imagined by each person, those that are still to come and the use they’ll make of the experience. We’ve learned some rules, some manners. We only have to put them into practice; each individual will decide how and where. I can’t stop doing it, and every day I see different things, and I’ve been playing the game for days.”

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