Our first project will bring Junior and Senior students from across Wandsworth together to create a collective artwork, to express, communicate and share their experience of the past year, and to consider what community means to them.
Over 70 schools will be offered the opportunity to take part. Our students will involved in making the artwork itself, as well as supporting our partner schools with the project. Speaking about the opportunity, Mrs Longstaff has said:
“This is a fantastic opportunity for our young people in Wandsworth to work together and take increased ownership of their community role. The project very much reflects Putney High School’s “It Starts with Me” ethos and expands this to “It Starts with Us”. We’re seeing more and more how our students are actively wanting to find ways that they can make a tangible difference and our involvement in this project provides an opportunity to do just that.”
The artistic vision for the project has been developed by Alexander Mourant: ‘My project draws upon the metaphor ‘Different Boats in the Same Storm’ to highlight and reconsider the nature of home and the importance of our shared community. COVID-19 was a rapid, incoming tide, one which paradoxically brought with it intense moments of intimacy, and great swells of distance and isolation. As we came to terms with our separation—from family, friends and loved ones —I believe we began a path of individual and collective learning, examining what it is, truly, to be home.
A Place to Call Home, is a collective artwork, one which responds deeply to these ideas, and proposes that communal living can be expanded into a societal context: if a family lives in a house, then a community too, is a place where we all live—it’s a home within a home. We will work on a collective architecture, an artwork which is born through many parts, and is built, together, brick by brick. This architecture will take the form of a 2D house, or a “home”. I will provide each school with a pre-cut wooden panel (a section, or piece of the puzzle) which, when brought together with the remaining parts, forms the shape of a house. Our ‘home’ when experienced in its entirety, will encapsulate the collective experience and imaginings of children across Wandsworth. No matter their school status or demographic, their voices will be heard and woven into this artwork, representing variety, diversity and the social fabric of our community. They will create a place to call home.’
The project will be launched on 5 July and the final artwork will be on public display in late October 2021. We can’t wait to be part of it!