By: Sue Tansley and Sarah Jones 

Exploring the theme of “Fragments” for their internal exam year 10 Artists were taken to London on Thursday 28th March. Fine Artists fought their way through the crowds on the second day of the ‘Van Gogh and Britain exhibition’ at Tate Britain. Fine Artists compared Van Gogh’s work to some of the British masters of the same era and explored what his influence has been on art in the 20th century and beyond. Perhaps one of the most famous artists of all time, our artists were able to see Van Gogh’s work ‘in the flesh’ judging the acidic greens of the skin to the rhythmic swirling crescendo’s of his brushwork. The National Portrait Gallery saw Photographer Martin Parr explore ‘Britishness’ in its many guises. It was an exhibition with empathy and humour, a sparkle with a glitter disco ball and brightly coloured gallery walls from which to showcase Parr’s ‘characters’. Parr turns his lens upon us the viewer, the crowd, the passer-by, the ordinary and shows us as ‘extraordinary’. All left with a smile. Fine Artists enjoyed a gallery talk, which guided us through the eras through the power of the portrait. We took a closer look to understand symbolism. We drew from the haunting red eyes of Lowry’s self-portrait and explored self-promotion and marketing in the work of the first female artist to be shown in the gallery, Mary Beale. The Photographers started their day with in the major retrospective of seminal War Photographer Don McCullin, developing a greater understanding of what it means to observe an horrific event and not be able to intervene. The welcome relief of the Martin Parr cushioned them in preparation for Diane Arbus’s view of the weird and unusual on display at the Hayward Gallery. Fantastic inspiration throughout the day enabled our Photographers to then take photographs on the South Bank with newly informed perspectives and an eye for the unusual.

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