The alTURNERtive Prize Winner 2016


The alTURNERtive prize, now in its fifteenth year celebrates outstanding contemporary art practice by 12 nominated students at Welling School. The prize evolves every year and marks the current concerns of the artists involved and displays the impressive, varied nature of the work tackled by students in Years 11-13. The breadth of issues and approaches that are confronted easily rivals those found on degree courses. Every year has been remarkably different, highlighting the innovative approach to art education for which Welling School is now renowned.

This year the award was presented to the winner by former Turner Prize nominee Jane Wilson. The prize was judged by a panel made up of the Freelands Foundation’s Head of Education Henry Ward, former alTURNERtive Prize nominee Abi Granger and art teacher Harriet Stripling.

Sara Nakash was announced as winner to an expectant audience in the Berwick Road Gallery on the 1st of December. The judges commended the intensity and commitment of Sara’s practice. Sara skilfully produced work around the theme of maternity and childbirth. Sara’s installation uses drawing, painting, sculpture and audio to produce a claustrophobic intense emotional experience. Sara has broad interests and this is exemplified in her work for the exhibition. The Popular Prize, voted for by Year 7 students, was awarded to Nicole Malcolm for a large scale oil painting exploring the surface of fabric.



The alTURNERtive Prize 2016

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You are invited to the private view and presentation of the alTURNERtive Prize 2016 on Thursday 1st December 6-9pm.

The presentation of the award, by Jane Wilson, will take place at 7.30pm. 

Sahba Akbar

Amy Baldwin

Madison Brownlow

Chloe Coburn

Leonie Houching

Nicole Malcolm

Lily Moseley

Sara Nakash

Oliver Pickett

Lay-La Pinnock

Chloe Savill

Ellie Wills



Y7 National Portrait Gallery Trip

Today, 30 Y7 students visited the National Portrait Gallery. They explored and enjoyed the vast portrait collections on display including work by contemporary artists such as Antony Gormley, Luc Tymons, Marlene Dumas, and Michael Craig Martin to mention but a few. During the visit, the students participated in drawing and investigation exercises inspired by the work they had seen. This trip was inspired by the current Y7 autumn visual arts curriculum which focuses on drawing and portraiture. The students enjoyed their experience and participated in discussions relating to the contrasts in styles of work they had seen. Aside from the learning, students also commented that the trip had given them the opportunity to make new friends. – Art really is amazing.

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ARTiculation Teachers Forum

On Wednesday evening we hosted the ARTiculation Teachers Forum in our gallery. This was a chance for teachers to find out about the Prize, as well as hear from Dr Kirsty McDougall, Arts Admissions Tutor for Cambridge University. The ARTiculation Prize is a public speaking competition for students aged between 16 and 19. Each student gives a presentation about a work of art, artefact or architecture of their choice. We look forward to some of Welling School students being part of the award next year!



History, Philosophy and Ethics Exhibition

The History, Philosophy and Ethics department have take over the gallery for the final weeks of the school term. The exhibition encourages students to engage with History, Ethics and Philosophy through interaction and the visual arts. On the opening night there was over 50 parents, students and teachers who enjoyed the exhibition and speeches from students on a range of topics. Amongst the speeches there was:

‘Can hackivism be a source for good?’ by Jeremy Fosten and ‘What did Simone De Beauvoir argue?’ by Carni O’Driscoll.

Well done to the History, Philosophy and Ethics department, and in particular Danny Conway for curating and organising the show.

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Courtauld Gallery Canon Workshops

Earlier in June a selected group of year 7 Canon students participated in several workshops with the Courtauld Gallery education team and artist Millie Knight. In the first workshops students presented their research boards that they had been working on and shared with others the information they had discovered about the drawing they had seen on their gallery visit and other facts about the story behind the artwork and the artist who made it. Students made a drawing from their research and in the following workshop made this into a woodblock print. Helen Higgins from the Courtauld gave some historical context to woodcuts and the purpose of these, the prints were very successful and students went away with the knowledge of this important process.

The woodblock prints were used in the final workshops led by artist Millie Knight. In pairs the Canon students came up with a storyboard to present a key idea from their research. They were shown ways of presenting research in the form of a concertina book. Students selected colours and printed these in acrylic then collaged and edited their work. They created lino-cut stamps to give their stories texture and added text and their woodblock prints to their work. After two full days of hard work their final proofs were complete and ready to be digitally printed.

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Trip to Aida Wilde’s Studio

Students from Year 7 through to 12 attended a workshop with the wonderful Aida Wilde in her print studio in Hackney Wick. Here they discovered the artists work and screen printed a fantastic poster designed by artist Cristina Lina.

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(photo by Aida Wilde)

As part of the day we looked at graffiti in the area and discussed the rapidly changing landscape of Hackney Wick, in particular thinking about the effects of gentrification and the role of artists and art in this process.


This is the last workshop in a series of several in which Welling School students have produced content for a series of posters that will be part of the re-activation of the Schooling and Culture journal. Schooling and Culture was a publication created by educationalists and young people in the 70s.

Thanks so much to Olivia Chessell, Cristina Lina and Louise Shelley from The Showroom Gallery who have organised and run a series of fantastic workshops as part of this project.


The Project Archive is Here

The project archive has been built and is now in the reception area ready for people to take and read some of Welling School’s finest publications. The project was a collaboration with designer – makers co-db and Key Stage 3 students Lucy Cloud, Katie Jordan, Frankie Wilkinson, Charnie Coleman, Shani Obinyan, Katie Ford, Frank Watson, Alfie Parker, Sam Evans, Billie – Jo James, Emma Britchfield, Ashanti Tchaleau, Anastasia Vkova, Dani Moore, Rosie Kenn and Carla Dobbins.

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Courtauld Collection Visit

On 9th May a selected group of talented Year 7 Canon students visited The Courtauld Gallery in London. These students will be working hard over the next few weeks to investigate artworks in the Courtauld collection.

We toured around the gallery with the graphic artist Millie Knight and viewed some special paintings which would become clues in their personal investigations. Students viewed the current Botticelli exhibition, showing works on paper taken from a book illustrating Dante’s Divine Comedy. They made drawings and searched for hidden details in some of the drawings.

Welling year 7 students were then given privileged access to the Prints and Drawings Room; they are the youngest ever to have seen these artworks in their collection. We had to take precautions before entering the room including washing our hands and leaving all pencils and pens outside, the artworks were unglazed and very precious. After an introduction by the curator Rachel, telling us about the size of the Courtauld’s collection and how valuable the pieces are, we then viewed pieces by Lucian Freud, Peter Paul Rubens, Toulouse-Lautrec, Paul Gauguin, JMW Turner, Thomas Gainsborough and Juan de Juanes. Students worked as art detectives to discover facts about the works from their observations, making notes and creating research questions which they could further investigate throughout the project.

Students then participated in a workshop with Millie Knight, looking at formats of books and how research can be visually presented. They made concertina books which they will add to before their workshop in school next month with Millie and the gallery’s Young Person Coordinators.


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