Neural Pathway, Kangaroo Valley Public School

Submitted by Elyssa Sykes-Smith

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Client: Sculpture in the Valley

Location: Kangaroo Valley, Australia

Completion date: 2019

Artwork budget: $15,000

Project Team

Art Manager, Director

Colleen Martin Fry

Sculpture in the Valley

Principal

Andrew Smee

Kangaroo Valley Public School

Overview

As part of the 2019 Arts in the Valley Festival, Sculpture in the Valley supported an artist in residence program at Kangaroo Valley Primary School. The project started in Term 1, 2019, and has enabled all KVPS students to engage with the sculptor Elyssa Sykes-Smith Artist as she created a site-specific work for the school. As part of the school’s creative arts program, students participated in the process of making a sculptural work and identify with the role of an artist. Collaboration between the artist, the KVPS students, staff and parents and Sculpture in the Valley was a very rewarding experience for all.

The sculpture was created using recycled timber, structural steel, paint and hardware. The sculpture measures (H) 3.5m (W) 3.5m (D) 1m. The sculpture is located at the front of KVPS, on public display to the main road of the township of Kangaroo Valley, NSW, Australia.

Goals

Sculpture in the Valley commissioned Elyssa Sykes-Smith as the artist in residence to connect with the Kangaroo Valley community through facilitating a collaborative sculpture making project at KVPS and directly involve the community in the exhibition and festival season. Sykes-Smith incorporated the STEAM educational approach when designing the creative educational program. The students were taken through the entire process of creating a public art sculpture beginning with an introduction session, concept development (thematic discussions and drawings), design development and model making, material sourcing (including recycled timber), fabrication, structure and engineering, installation, documentation, and public celebration and exhibition opening. Collaborative working methods were integrated into the design of the program and was also the thematic focus of the Neural Pathway artwork which raised discussions surrounding generating new thoughts, creative potential, team work, and repeated patterns seen in natural forms and humans. These approaches were addressed and integrated into each stage of the program and were constantly discussed within the relevant framework to reinforce the central themes.

Additional Information

https://www.artsinthevalley.net.au/community https://www.facebook.com/ArtsInTheValley