‘Hallo Europa’ is an initiative by Crista van Dee in collaboration with the province of Gelderland in the Netherlands. Christa is ‘Ontgrenzer’ (‘Noborder’) by profession in which she works together with young people in the context of 75 years of freedom in Europe.
Students from the Achterhoek (NL) and North Rhine-Westphalia (DE) have been invited to create a joint work of art concerning the question of how we can maintain peace. During this project students will meet about six times. The ultimate goal is to get to know each other, collaborate and build a lasting relationship.
To gain inspiration for the joint artwork the students visited the Kröller-Müller Museum in Otterlo. To help them to get started I was asked to create assignments to get acquainted with various types of art, to link SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) to a work of art and to learn how to look at art using Cloudwatching. All assignments were performed and discussed in a duo or trio.
Although the students are of different ages and educational levels, they immediately get started. In the first assignment, students together choose an SDG that appeals to them, for example ‘no poverty’, and then look for a work of art that this SDG conveys.
In a short time, discussions are started in both German and Dutch about why there is a link between the SDG and the artwork. At the end of the discussion they sketch the chosen work. Everyone makes their own sketch so they inspire each other again.
With the help of two postcard assignments, two works of art are deeply studied and the artist’s choice of material encourages thinking and sketching.
During the last assignment the students will look at abstract art by discovering shapes with the help of Cloudwatching. They were guided by two questions; what are the shapes that I see and why does that appeal to me? In this way getting acquainted with abstract art is easily accessible because everything they discover is good, no errors possible in these assignments.
At the end of the day, the students went home with a pile of sketches, varying from very detailed sketches to quick experiments with drawing. The new insights they gattered will help them to work together while creating their own artwork in March. I am looking forward to seeing the result!