Is it Risky Showing Frisky?

Lees, Jonty ORCID logoORCID: (2019) Is it Risky Showing Frisky? In: Global Communities: Curating Modern Art Today, 26 -27 April 2019, Tate St Ives.

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Abstract / Summary

The Cornwall Council Schools Art Collection was created in 1961 with the intention that children in Cornwall should have access to great art. Artists represented include Jacob Epstein, Barbara Hepworth, Alfred Wallis and Terry Frost. Many Collection works are fragile and valuable, which means the Collection is rarely displayed in schools.

Begun in 2018, Pool School Gallery makes art accessible to a wider, under-represented and disadvantaged audience. We believe that a school is at the heart of a community. Pool School Gallery is supported with enthusiasm because the wider community is invested in the young people we work with. Over the next 24 months, Pool School Gallery will ask if showing works from the Collection in a school as intended is a risk worth taking, as we open our exhibition displaying Frisky (1953), a bronze sculpture of Epstein’s dog and the first work acquired for the Collection, alongside works by students from across the county.

The risk of not engaging with the audience – which can happen when art is ‘parachuted’ into a setting without explanation or support – is reduced in this case because students from Pool Academy work directly on the project through all stages. Students bring their own knowledge to the artworks and, through the process, value is placed on this knowledge. As custodians with responsibility, the risk of damage through ‘lack of care’ is also reduced. The greatest actual risk for this Collection is that key works will be stored away where young people have no access, which goes against its core value: that an early encounter with art can be significant.

This public-facing project will be used by Cornwall Council to inform how the Collection can be utilised in the future. Pool School Gallery is supported by The National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: History > Cornwall
History > International
Social Sciences
Courses by Department: The Falmouth School of Art > Fine Art
Depositing User: Jonty Lees
Date Deposited: 01 Jul 2019 14:01
Last Modified: 11 Nov 2022 16:27


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