“My artwork is about people coming together, sitting under the moon. Togetherness is inspired by the mid-Autumn Festival and explores what brings people together,” said Wyndham Central student Ellie Monk, who had her artwork chosen to be installed.
“This is the first time I have created a design for a light artwork using shape without fine detail but still convey a message.”
Grace Leone, PhD candidate (School of Architecture and Urban Design) and equity outreach creative producer and educator, said that the opportunity allowed students to develop art and design skills while allowing students to see themselves reflected in the city.
“This collaboration has created an opportunity for secondary school students to contribute to and see themselves as a part of the everchanging Melbourne context,” said Leone.
Mark Wang, CEO of The Museum of Chinese Australian History said the collaboration brought about an unlikely, yet inspiring connectivity between creative students, Melbourne’s urban city spaces and Chinese culture heritage.
“I congratulate Ellie for creating the inaugural exhibit in The Slot Gallery – a place to discover creativity from a different perspective.”
Carving out identities at NGV
In August, RMIT flagship Equity Outreach program, I Belong, facilitated another art and design experience in collaboration with the Smith Family’s SmArts program. I Belong is designed to increase aspiration for tertiary education through hands-on, discipline-specific practice.
Named Contouring Identities, the public artwork is inspired by The Picasso Century exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) and is on display at the Learning Studios at NGV International and at RMIT University’s Media Precinct.
Students from Wyndham Central College, Hume Central Secondary College and Manor Lakes College engaged with the creative technique of blind contour drawing; a drawing exercise where an artist draws the outline of a subject in one continuous line. Applying this technique using Adobe Photoshop, students created portraits of each other and explored ways to represent individual identities through collage.
“This is the first time NGV has collaborated with RMIT on school students creating art installations,” said Elizabeth Gage, Educator, NGV.
“Not only has this work brought a sense of energy to the NGV Learn Studios space but also inspired other visiting students to explore their own creativity. Education opportunities of this nature are incredibly valuable in building a sense of community, belonging and familiarity among students.”
For these Year 9 and 10 students, the opportunity to showcase their work has also opened doors to higher education, with the partnership designed to capture the breadth of artistic talent found in Melbourne’s suburbs while encouraging these budding young artists and designers to build aspirations for further study into the future.