Rivers of the World is an international art and education project delivered in partnership with the British Council.
The two-year programme involves the pupils learning about their local river in the first year, learning about a river in another country in the second. The project encourages young people to explore and reflect on local and global issues, giving them the experience to build the skills they need for life and work in a global society.
Working with an artist or designer who has been trained by the Rivers of the World lead artist Shona Watt, pupils learn and gather ideas that are channelled creatively into drawings, paintings, photographs and other visual media. These are transformed into a collection of large-scale works of art. The artworks are then curated and exhibited in galleries, along the River Thames walkway, schools across the UK and around the world in partner countries.
Transported supported the project taking place in Boston and for the project we commissioned local artist Emily Cartwright.
Emily worked with local schools; Boston High, Boston Grammar, Haven High, Thomas Cowley, William Lovell and Giles Academy.
They each did a day and a half art workshop based around a starting point that was allocated to them – River Culture, River City, Polluted River, River of Life, Working River and Resourceful River. Broadly the students looked into themes such as trade, folk tales, music and literature connected with the River Witham, Boston and Lincolnshire. We used techniques such as printmaking, paper cutting and collage to make the final artworks. The
Schools were paired with a partner school in Nepal who did the same project with a visiting artist.
“The strengths of the programme are the opportunity to work with a true artist as well as bringing inspiration to the teachers. It is refreshing to have a form of CPD which is practical and specifically relevant to art teaching. The workshops have been fantastic and very enjoyable.”
– Lynsay Volley, teacher, Boston High School.
“I am very pleased with the final artwork. I loved using new materials. It was an amazing opportunity.”
– Hannah, pupil, Giles Academy
“I loved doing this as it gave me a chance to share my ideas. By doing something different it gave me a whole new perspective on art. I feel 100% more in touch with my area and I feel ever so proud of this opportunity.”
– Lily-May, pupil, Thomas Cowley High School.