(This is an item from our archive site) Having attended the free Sorrell Foundation Saturday Club for the past two years, this display of talent is very close to my heart, and a program that I believe inspires, nurtures and develops every young person's ability with all my heart. The show itself was fantastic, beautiful art work created to an outstanding quality, reminiscent to that of a degree show.
Whilst I was there, I got the chance to talk to some young people who were part of the exhibition, doing their Arts Award as part of their time working with their local art school: University of the Creative Arts, Newham Creative Hub. Latfia Wallace, a member of the group told me they'd been making some (fantastic) banners with Jeremy Deller, as their final piece to show in Somerset House; their time at the university totaling a dedicated 15 weeks of learning. Another young artist joins us at this point, explaining how motivating Jeremy Deller was, a visiting artist to their university, as part of the 'Masterclass' program embedded into the club, something which I myself have greatly benefited from.
The banners were centred around the theme of 'What are we loving at the moment', explaining the diversity in the banners, 'Everyone has different likes and dislikes…Everyone's different, we have lots of different tastes in different things, even though we all act as one community, and we link together, we are our own individuals.' This sense of community is evident throughout the club, with colleges and universities providing a platform for young people to network, bouncing ideas off each other, and joining to create collaborative work. This happens on a local and national scale, with the show being a place to allow participants from all over the country to meet, building personal and professional relationships.
As part of their time there, the group were taken on a trip to the renowned Central St Martins, a trip which 'really inspired us', in addition to exploring a range of art forms, from painting to drawing as well as, 'actually getting to make costumes, it was really fun!', furthering them through their Silver Arts Award, which the girls assure me will be 'really helpful to our careers.'
I urge anyone who is in London to go and view the show, the quality of work, and creative freedom in the show created by 14-16 year olds is incomparable, and it is on in the Embankment Gallery at Somerset Houseuntil 20thJune with free admission.