ACT Artists-in-Schools Program 2013

In 2013, four artists were chosen to work in ACT primary schools. The artists, in conjunction with their nominated schools, developed projects based on the artists’ current professional practice that provided opportunities for students and teachers to develop skills and an understanding of artistic thinking.

Details of the selected artists and their projects are below:

Teffany Thiedeman at Torrens Primary School

Teffany Thiedeman is a Canberra based visual artist/ceramicist, with a background in educational services for children, specialising in visual art.  In 2013 she worked with Torrens Primary School in developing a 10 week ceramics program, investigating a variety of clay techniques, surface finishes and creating experimental mosaics by combining clay with recycled tiles, crockery and found materials. The theme the students worked with throughout the work was ‘Creatures’, giving them an opportunity to research different animals, creatures, legends and stories.

During lunch times Teffany worked on the larger elements of the mosaics giving students, staff and parents the opportunity to observe her working. This also gave students the chance to ask questions and visually respond with their own artworks in class time.

One of the outcomes of the program was the production of a large mosaic table for the school's new garden space.

Teffany Thiedeman at Torrens Primary School

Kirstie Rea at Caroline Chisholm School Junior Campus

Kirstie is a local glass artist who creates exhibition art works from her studio and teaches art locally, nationally and internationally. 

The students of Caroline Chisholm Junior School were given hands on experience making fused glass tiles which were used to create an artwork as a permanent installation in the school. The project involved students drawing and designing glass tiles as well as a visit to the Glassworks. The Glassworks visit included a gallery tour, an explanation of glass making processes and tools and the opportunity to watch a glass blowing demonstrating. Around half of the final 500 coloured fused glass tiles used in the final artwork were created at the Canberra Glassworks by students and teachers. The final glass tiles were mounted around the school, along with words made by Kirstie from laser cut steel as a permanent visual reminder for students reflecting the five school values – ‘Honesty, Respect, Trust, Freedom through Responsibility and Doing my Best’. 

Kirstie Rea at Caroline Chisholm School Junior Campus

Antonia Aitken at Evatt Primary School

Antonia is a Canberra based visual artist with a background in printmaking, drawing, drama and physical theatre. During her time at Evatt Primary School Antonia introduced students to printmaking techniques and new approaches to drawing - guiding students through the use of specific materials and ways of making.

Antonia explored how observational and sensory drawing techniques can be used to describe the environment, with groups collecting plants and objects, sounds and smells that became the inspiration for drawing and printmaking exercises. Students used ink and wash drawing to make images, and mono-printing and contact printing to take the drawings through a process of abstraction. Both hand and press printing were used so that the students could experience different technology for making prints. A direct outcome of the residency is a proposal to facilitate future printmaking projects at the school.

Using the images, colours and forms created by the children in class, Antonia also created a final artwork for the school for their 40th Anniversary in 2014. 

Antonia Aitken at Evatt Primary School

Kate Llewellyn at Majura Primary School

Kate Llewellyn is a Canberra based multimedia artist with a background in digital media, theatre and design. In 2013 she worked with the Majura Primary School in developing individual and group art work that formed part of a larger digital media work.

Kate worked with students across years 3, 4, 5 and 6 to create textured backgrounds, character masks, miniature models and props. These elements were worked into digital compositions, culminating in a film which was presented to an end of year school assembly.

Students were also able to participate in a digital photography shoot, capturing their artworks in high resolution photographs.

The residency was successful in inspiring artistic enquiry across all stages of the project, from research, design and planning, right through to the construction of the finished product. 

Kate Llewellyn at Majura Primary School


Bimberi Youth Justice Centre

In addition to the four Primary School projects, George Rose an artist working in a range of mediums including mural painting, sign writing and sculpture worked with the young people at Bimberi, sharing her unique approach to street art.

More details about the outcomes of the Bimberi project will be available shortly.