Year 9 sculpture project fully baked, ready for Art Exhibition

Mrs Readman’s class recently concluded their Spring and Summer term project with a successful pit firing.

The project saw the pupils explore the architecture of Le Corbusier and the work of Scottish born sculptor Eduardo Paolozzi whilst working innovatively between 2D and 3D media. The project started with a pile of lolly pop sticks and pegs with the challenge of building a free standing structure, this then formed the basis of a cardboard architectural model. The pupils had plenty of fun drawing from the combined models whilst not looking at the paper or using their opposite hand. These drawings were then translated into wire drawings which were transposed onto a clay surface. Pods were made by combining two of the pieces of clay and slip was added to the surface in order to help portray the energy of the earlier pencil drawings. Once the pieces had been through their initial biscuit firing to toughen them up the pupils wrapped their pieces in combustibles such as orange peels, banana skins and lengths of fabric soaked in salt.

Over a Sunday, Y9 boys could be found digging out the pit in King’s wood, they possibly got a little carried away as they hit the water table but nothing could dampen their spirits. The following day, finally, was the firing. After wrapping their pieces, the pupils carried their work into the pit and buried it in amongst sawdust and hardwood logs. Once the work was in, more sawdust and straw were added until the pit was full. A layer of newspaper was then placed across the surface before adding a layer of planks. The paper caught slowly and within half an hour the firing was well underway. Once the top layer of sawdust had smouldered away, sheets of metal were placed over the fire to reduce the oxygen available. This was done to encourage more reds and pinks from the copper which had been sprinkled into the pit.

All the pieces survived the firing and will be available to view at the end of term Art Exhibition.