Texts from the book ‘Invisible Cities’ by Italo Calvino have been the starting point for this year’s work with LVIth artists. To renew the student’s approach and refresh their source material we sought the help of artist Jeanette Barnes, renowned for her large drawings of urban spaces.
On Tuesday February 5th she came and spoke about her work at Cranleigh, leading a drawing workshop in preparation for a day working around London’s Southbank. Wednesday morning was bitterly cold but dry as we met Jeanette at the Royal Festival Hall. After a brief talk we moved out to the walkway by Hungerford bridge. Twenty minutes was all we could stand in the cold and drawing on the festival hall terrace was much easier before we took lunch. In the afternoon we made Waterloo station our base, having first completed their strict visitor sign-in procedure.
Jeanette challenged the pupils to look carefully and to explore their drawing materials to find fresh equivalents to the urban scenes in front of them. The Cranleighans’ hard work and determination, despite the cold, resulted in some exciting material that should successfully feed into their projects in the second half of the year.