Half Term Workshops Give Portraits a Makeover

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Half Term Workshops Give Portraits a Makeover

November 04, 2008

The Holburne Collection as never seen beforePhoto Board Museum Character Cut-Out

An innovative art project created by the Holburne Museum working with two new partners has created wonderfully surprising characters which can be found in Sydney Gardens.

The public is invited to come and see figures inspired by portraits in the Holburne’s collection given an unexpected and often humorous twist. Young people who participated in the week-long project have given their own contemporary interpretation to the figures found in the Holburne’s eighteenth-century portraits.

After studying the costume, pose and people in a range of portraits the students drew their own figures and then transformed their drawings into life-size painted MDF photo boards of the characters that had inspired them.

Most importantly the faces of these portrait-boards are missing so that anyone can pose behind the board and see themselves in a new light (like the photo boards sometimes found at the seaside).

Visitors to Sydney Gardens are invited to take pictures on their mobile phones of themselves posing behind their favourite cut-out portrait board and send the picture to the Holburne for a photo gallery on the Museum’s website.

The Holburne Museum teamed up with Compass and Mentoring Plus for this half-term art project. Compass is made up of a small but dedicated team of professionals who are available to help and work positively with young people aged 8 to 13. Mentoring Plus aims to promote community based initiatives, encouraging local businesses to take an active role in youth crime prevention work.

Emma Finch, Education and Outreach officer at the Holburne notes: “This project was a great success on a number of levels. We brought together two organisations who work with similar groups of young people, so that they could share knowledge and experiences and find mutual support.

The young people who participated also met together for the first time and bonded in a supportive way, often having lived through similar experiences. They all worked together on a series of figures made to be placed in Sydney Gardens and encourage people, in particular other young people, to recognise and interact with them – hopefully developing a sense of ownership and value to not only the figures but to the gardens themselves”.

Send your mobile phone picture to: 07536 064195
Picture Gallery »

For further information please contact: Katie Jenkins
T: 01225 820818 E: k.jenkins@bath.ac.uk


The Holburne Museum
One of the country’s great small museums, The Holburne has a wonderfully rich collection of paintings, silver, sculpture, furniture and porcelain, with important works by Gainsborough, Stubbs and Turner. Housed in the 18th century Sydney Hotel and set within the park of Sydney Gardens, it is Bath’s most beautiful museum.

The Museum has closed to undertake a redevelopment that will see its existing home restored, refurbished and extended through a striking extension designed by Eric Parry Architects. The development will make the Museum fully accessible to all for the first time, create a purpose designed education space and allow more of the collection to be displayed than ever before. The renewed Holburne is scheduled to reopen in autumn 2010. The Holburne Museum is a registered charity (no. 310288). The development is supported by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (www.hlf.org.uk).

The Compass Project
The Compass Project is the inter-agency Children’s Fund partnership that funds the Youth Inclusion and Support Panel linked to the Youth Offending Team (YOT), under the umbrella of Bath & North East Somerset Council. Mentoring Plus is a partner run by B&NES.

Those who participated in this Holburne project included Kieran, Kim, Jenny, Nick, Charmaine, Lissa. Working with them were Charlotte, Terry, Richard, Catlin, Sarah; Tony, Elisha and Emma.

Statements from participants about what Compass has helped them to achieve included: Compass/mentoring plus helps me with my anger
Stop bullying someone at school
Try new things
Learn right from wrong
Understand what we are doing
Keep occupied
I am getting better
I always have someone to talk to now
We talk about everything
We decide what to do together

Published on: 04/11/2008