Space2 has an enduring partnership with Allerton CE Primary School and Leeds Beckett University, through its contracted role as ‘Arts Champion’. Initially contracted 10 years ago by the Alwoodley Extended Services Cluster, funding was secured for 2 years, to work across the Cluster.
On completion of the contract the school and Space2 discussed continuing the role specifically for Allerton CE Primary and this continues. Our partnership has developed significantly over time and we are privileged to support whole school provision of an arts theme each year, with delivery of a targeted activity programme too. Underpinning the programme is the development of arts and transferable skills, with a particular emphasis on self-motivation, emotional literacy and raised confidence.
The children have worked alongside Leeds Beckett University students to create films, visual art and photography launching an annual exhibition. The projects also offer an opportunity for the children to visit the University and participate in workshops in the School of Design, using the equipment and being part of a busy department.
This offers so many benefits for all the partners and the children’s willingness and ability to try new ideas, participate and contribute to the sessions always exceeds expectations. It is noted that they’re creative maturity, critical thinking and problem solving are better developed than many of their peers. The process is very important and the children bring a level of commitment, passion and skill to the project, that both challenge and enable our artists to grow their own skills as they respond to the richness of understanding, talent and enthusiasm. The students have an amazing learning opportunity and for some it means, for the first time they consider working with children.
Barking Up the Barking Up the Wrong Right Tree
Wrong Right Tree is a creative, environmental and wellbeing project in partnership with Space2, Leeds Libraries, Leeds Beckett University School of Design students and children from Allerton CE and Thorpe Primary schools.
It takes an imaginative close up of the relationship between trees and books, from the origins of paper-making and the invention of print through to the current ecological crisis. The children’s journey has in part been inspired by Dr Seuss’s The Lorax. It highlights the environmental role of trees, revels in nature, tells stories, inspires a love of books and celebrates the diverse cultures that have contributed to books and printing over centuries, from the Islamic origins of paper-making to the invention of the printing press in China.
Children and students have gained inspiration from walking in local woods; workshops with storyteller, Matthew Bellwood; exploration of Leeds Central Library’s old book collection and visits to Leeds Beckett University to use state of the art equipment. And they have brought their own original ideas, perspectives and thoughts together to create this exhibition.
It is though, more than an exhibition, it is a celebration of nature, a love of books and a call to environmental action.
We have just started a brand new artistic collaboration with the school pupils and the university students called Dive Deep which investigates the effects of climate change on the world oceans. We are planing an exhibition at Room 700 at Leeds Central Library in March. Watch this space!