Test Chamber


This was an ambitious week long residency that challenged and stretched the abilities of a group of year 7 children. Each days session developed those preceding it. The cumulative result was one that allowed the pupils to realise a much greater depth of creativity, sharpened their perceptive skills, and encouraged them to take artistic risks.

Test Chamber was designed to be process oriented, focussing more on the understandings that can be gained through in-depth exploration of the creative process, rather than concentrating on a finished outcome. Working from five core concepts:

1. Information
2. Cause and Effect
3. Interdependency
4. Flux
5. Value

the pupils engaged with a wide variety of techniques and approaches. These ranged from digital photography, charcoal drawing, sculpture and installation techniques using conceptual and collaborative methods.

Each day a different theme was explored, informing the work for the day, and building towards a greater understanding of the relationship between the pupils and the society around them.

During the week, it was a deliberate intention for there to be no ‘finished product’, as would would normally be found in an art project. Rather, the activity room was seen as an experiment and ‘sketch-book’ of ideas, as well as a collaboration between the artist and the pupils. This allowed the pupils to concentrate more on developing ideas, and enabled an increased level of response to their inspirations.