Preston City Mela will work in collaboration with Lancashire County Council Education- Equality & Diversity Team to identify 3 school to produce three art installations for Mela 2023 event. 2 primary schools Year 6 age group will work on the projects and 1 high school. The artwork will be displayed at Mela with input from the schools taking part. The artwork will ensure it captures the theme of Mela – music, dance, writing and food. There were 120 pupils from the 3 schools who took part. Each child involved with the project was presented with a ‘Certificate of Application’ from Mela
The Equality and Diversity team at Lancashire County Council coordinated this project in collaboration Preston City Mela. The three-school selected were delighted to be given the opportunity to be involved and created some excellent art pieces.
The team carefully selected three schools in Preston and worked alongside the headteacher to discuss the project. Our aim was for students present a piece of artwork that represents their understanding of the South-Asian culture. Each school discussed the aim and objectives with the students who took a creative lead in the project.
Cop Lane Primary School
The students decided to create rangoli pattern inspired Peacock with paint, glitter and sequences. The peacock is also the National Animal of India. The students each designed personalised feather that used intricate rangoli patterns and used blue wool to sew around the feather; the feathers required precision and focus as the material was delicate.
The students went onto sewing together flowers out of saree material and added coloured sequence to add more sparkle. The students chose flowers as they felt the flowers are synonymous with rangoli patterns and India. This then led onto colouring the canvas background in green and then adding glitter to the outline of the peacock. The crown of the peacock was completed with pink and red sequence and the beak was painted in bronze and gold.
Once the artwork was completed it was presented in the Preston City Mela for hundreds of people to see and learn. People were mesmerised by the artwork and the headteacher- Mr Ashmore was very proud of his students created.
Deepdale Primary School
Deepdale Primary School was selected because it has a beautiful diverse community in school representing many cultures. The students spent a full day planning, designing and executing the final artwork. The students decided that will use the school values to help them lead on their final vision; they decided their themes would be: Community, Harmony and Diversity.
Community Canvas – This canvas had a combination of mosaic designs that is combination of geometric and calligraphy designs. The students used vibrant shades of blue and white with intricates patterns.
Diversity Canvas – This canvas had explosion of the vibrant and beautiful colours of orange, green and other bright colours. The theme of the canvas was inspired by the colourful trucks you would find in Pakistan; it was so well-designed that one the visitors commented that they felt like they were ‘sitting on the truck’ in Lahore. They canvas captivated each person that walked past the artwork.
Harmony Canvas – This canvas was yet another beautiful burst of beautiful purple, green, red and orange. The canvas opens with diva lamp with vibrant orange flames sparkling brightly; below the lamp is large flower full of South-Asian designs and patterns. The canvas easily looked like the outside of someone’s home, place of worship or celebratory event from South-Asia.
These high-quality and creative canvas could easily be displayed in an art – gallery, it is hard to believe that primary school children created such stunning pieces of art. It was privilege to personally go into the school and witness these canvases being designed and completed. The team-work, hard-work and passion was inspiring and it represented the heart of the school and their values.
Broughton High School
Broughton High School is an outstanding school with a rich diverse community of students. The school were the only high school to be selected and it was interesting to see what project theme the students would select.
The students created a textiles project inspired by the patterns, textiles and materials inspired by South-Asia. The students started their project by researching the link of the textiles industry in Lancashire and South-Asia. They also researched the history of the Preston City Mela to understand the significance of mela for the South-Asian community.
Once the research task was completed the students carefully designed animals, patterns, flowers etc that would then be sewed onto a vibrant colour material. Each square designed has a unique inspiration and story behind its selection. The students personalised their designs according to their understanding of the South-Asian culture.
The whole project was completed with a script explaining why they chose to select this theme of textiles and demonstrated their understanding of the South -Asian culture.
Again, the high-quality artwork created by school left visitors mesmerised and will now be displayed in school.