Art and Design
Paper tearing, tower building, mark making, jelly sculpting, water colouring canvas, stretching storytelling, paint smearing, trees blowing, sound recording, word creating, fabric stitching, colour copying, print repeating, ink dripping, space invading, slowly looking, bodies moving, laugh alouding, video filming, photo printing, wire bending, people expressing, things hanging, wobbly drawing, alternative thinking, memory jogging…
In art, we keep an open mind as to what we may discover, and we pride ourselves on being a breeding ground of creativity. It is our aim to provide students with the best experience possible in the subject. We work with a wide range of materials which include drawing and painting, printmaking, textiles, sculpture, and photography. Originality and independence of thought is paramount - students learn to think and act as artists and designers whilst also learning to appreciate other art works, and to understand the context in which they are made.
Our four teaching staff are highly qualified, enthusiastic, and passionate about Art in all its guises. Our students have access to four spacious and bright studios, two of which are equipped with printing presses. We also have a reading and research room which houses an impressive selection of books, a massive collection of inspirational documentaries, as well as computers (which have paint on them). We subscribe to a number of monthly Art periodicals such as Modern Painters, Frieze, Crafts and Canvas.
There is no substitute for studying art at first hand. With the emerging and thriving contemporary art scene in Dubai we enjoy regular trips to Bastakyia, and Al Serkal Avenue art district. We encourage our students to stay up-to-date with the art world. We have enjoyed visits to Venice (The Venice Biennale), Rome, Barcelona and China. Each year we also hold our own art exhibition displaying works by GCSE and A level students.
What makes a good teacher at Dubai College?
There are so many different types of good teachers. In Art, it is really important that we get to know our students well as often, the best art is deeply personal, and is about self-expression. Good teachers help build confidence.
What are you trying to encourage and instil in your students?
A strong work ethic and a life-long love and appreciation for art.
In your opinion, what makes Dubai College special?
Most definitely the art department; this is one of my favourite places in the world. But in seriousness, it is the students. Their engagement, intelligence, love and passion for learning, zest for life, constant smiles, politeness and support, amazes and inspires me, at the very least, ten times a day.
Who or what inspires you?
Louise Bourgeois, David Hockney, Henri Matisse, Emin on occasions, Grayson Perry, Robert Rauschenberg, Joan Miro, Mona Hatoum, Bernini, Joe Tilson, Frank Stella, envelopes, Francis Bacon, Peggy Guggenheim, Bob and Roberta Smith, Cornelia Parker, Gabriele Beveridge, Andy Goldsworthy, the shape(s) of numbers, Pablo Picasso, Cy Twombly, arriving in Venice that time, Antony Gormley, Sheila Hicks, Richard Rogers, definitely trees, Hokusai, music, Claus Oldenburg, Paul Smith, Vincent Van Gogh, Sean Scully, Lucian Freud, Charles and Ray Eames, Art Dubai, Alexander Calder, The Tate Modern…and most other buildings that house art, Yayoi Kusama, Mark Rothko, construction sites, white paint, the smell of roses and peppermint, and most recently Phyllida Barlow.
Tell us something not a lot of people know about you.
I once beat Mr Case in a race swimming around the Burj Al Arab!
Also, I do not subscribe to Facebook or certain other technologies. Whilst I am passionate about ideas, and the sharing of ideas, I would much prefer my students to experience ‘art’ (as an eleven to eighteen year old) through a paint brush or pencil.
Mrs J Bailey, Head of Art