Andria Zafirakou with, from left, Melvyn Bragg, Mark Wallinger and Simon Schama. Photograph: Alex Lentati/Evening Standard/eyevine
Congratulations to Andria Zafirakou, winner of the Global Teacher Prize, who has launched her charity, Artists in Residence, which will connect artists with schools in disadvantaged communities.
The campaign stems from the difficulties many schools have in getting artists of any sort – whether an up-and-coming local musician or a major movie star – into schools to work with and inspire children.
Karen Eslea, Head of Learning and Visitor Experience at Turner Contemporary, said:
“Research shows that the arts and creative subjects are being given less time and resource in schools than in the past in spite of the value of the creative industries to the UK economy at £92 billion a year. At Turner Contemporary, we are committed to supporting children’s leadership through the arts, and have seen the radical impact that the arts can have on young people’s social skills, imagination and creative output. We look forward to seeing Zafirakou’s Artist in Residence scheme take flight.”
Since 2011, Turner Contemporary has connected with over 70,000 children and adults through our world class learning programme, transforming the way that adults, children and young people see, think and learn through visual art.
Last year, as part of the gallery's Art Inspiring Change programme, 69 Young Arts Leaders Margate Primary Schools worked with four amazing artists to lead the way in reimagining and transforming four sites across the town. The young people, aged 5-11, presented their ideas to local Councillors, visited the Houses of Parliament, took over the gallery for a day, spent an afternoon with Lemn Sissay and much more. 100% of the parents involved saw a positive impact on their child.
As a result of the project, confidence in skills rose from 36% to 93%, confidence in ideas rose from 48% to 96%. Moreover, 86% demonstrated skills across the speaking and listening criteria, a rise of 62% from the beginning of the programme.
Art Inspiring Change was part of Turner Contemporary’s ongoing commitment to helping people see, think and learn differently by engaging with art in new ways and to the continued regeneration of Margate. This work will be developed in 2018 with the launch of two new radical projects.
“This is our time, this is the time for the arts, we are going to make a change and do something quite incredible." (Andrea Zafirakou)