ALCOA School Education Program Goes Virtual

Posted: March 19, 2022 / News

Waroona District High School students participate in online workshop as part of the Alcoa School Education Program. Image supplied by Waroona District High School

COVID-19 will not deny students the opportunity to take part in Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe, this year with the exhibition’s education program being adapted to an online offering.

The Alcoa School Education Program, supported by resources company and founding sponsor Alcoa, has been part of the annual exhibition since it started 18 years ago, with 32,000 students taking part to date.

Founding CEO and Artistic Director of Sculpture by the Sea, David Handley, said his team moved quickly to ensure children could continue to connect and engage in the artistic process without having to leave their classroom.

“We are taking artists into classrooms across Western Australia to make sure as many school students as possible have the opportunity to meet artists exhibiting in Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe this year. The artists will conduct sculpture making workshops that are enjoyed by thousands of students each year.”

Alcoa Australia President, Michael Gollschewski, praised Sculpture by the Sea for adapting to the current situation facing Western Australia.

“During the uncertain times schools are facing, it is great to see this partnership adapt quickly to offer students opportunities to connect and engage with artists and the artistic process in a safe environment,” he said.

Students and teachers can first safely enjoy a virtual tour of the exhibition from anywhere in the world (available here) featuring artists such as Carolina Arsenii and Stephanie De Biasi, recipients of the 2022 Western Australian Sculptor Scholarship, and fellow WA sculptors Mikaela Castledine, Sally Stoneman, Britt Mikkelsen, Tom de Munk-Kerkmeer, Monia Allegre, Fiona Gavino and Heavy Duty. Nineteen schools from regional and metropolitan areas have already booked online workshops and artist talks for Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe 2022.

After viewing the virtual tour of the exhibition, schools can participate in artist-led workshops that connect students to art, sand and surf no matter where they live within the State. Information packs, sculpture making materials including Alcoa-supplied aluminium products, and lesson plans are sent to teachers to help facilitate the workshops from afar.

Waroona District High School teacher and VET coordinator, Susan O’Meara, said: “The students (pictured) were excited to be involved in the online workshop. It was a first for me and most of the students, so we were really pleased with how well it worked. Students were engaged and really got into the workshop and left with a finished piece of art they were proud of.”

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