The Artist in Schools Program at Christmas Hills Primary School was joyful, creative and extremely rewarding experience and most importantly the children took complete ownership of the ‘Imaginarium project’ and were actively engaged in the entire process from concept to completion.
I took the position of facilitator, artistic director and project manager in this collaborative project. My priorities were to honour the creativity of the children while creating a permanent and interactive sculptural work. The delightful students of Christmas Hills Primary School developed ideas, concepts, and planning through a series of workshops including site specific earth art, casting, model making, landscape planning, clay sculpture, construction and drawing. They developed a concept of what the Imaginarium could be through discussion and visual inspiration, and contributed their ideas through sculptural form and drawing. The final sculptural works included a nest, a teepee, a bridge, a wind chime and a village, all set within a landscaped garden of various textures including boulders, stones, pebbles, sandpit, mulch and plants. The children helped in the construction and installation of the final works. They measured, mixed, painted, landscaped, cast, carved, wove, tightened nuts and bolts, planted and landscaped with energy and enthusiasm and watched their ideas come to life. An amazing bunch of parents were the heros that helped with the hard work to complete the project.
It really was a special project to be a part of, with an outcome that I believe we are all proud of. This permanent outdoor work is interactive, it is part garden, part playground and part sculpture and an enduring imaginative space for the children of Christmas Hills Primary.