In mid July Manx sculptor Rob Jones spent a week in the UK doing an intensive three day workshop for Year 10 students from the St Birinus School and Didcot Girls’ School, in advance of his first UK solo exhibition at the Sewell Centre Gallery in Oxfordshire.
Rob is a nationally-acclaimed sculptor residing in the Isle of Man. His work mainly involves sculpting metal into different geometric shapes.
The workshops proved to be a great success with the students and art teachers alike. The students worked with found steel shapes that Rob supplied and they were encouraged to start with a very open-minded view of what they were going to achieve over the course of the workshop. All students had the opportunity to try their hand at welding under close supervision and they were all able to complete a piece of abstract steel sculpture by the end of the course. On the final afternoon the students exhibited their pieces in a pop-up exhibition in the school and their teachers and fellow students were able to view their work. Teachers from other schools in the area who dropped in for part of the workshop are also keen to work with Rob on similar events in future.
We had a modern sculptor, Rob Jones, in school working with students from SBS and DGS with metal – creative, innovative and out of the ordinary, this has really grabbed our students’ imaginations and has been a tremendous experience for them.
- From the School Newsletter released a week after Rob's visit.
Rob was really impressed with the interest the students showed and the quality of the pieces they produced, and also with the innovative approach of the teachers who were keen to try something new (and willing to trust their students with welding equipment!).
If any Manx schools would like to give students the opportunity to do a similar workshop, Rob would be very happy to help.
Rob’s exhibition at the Sewell Centre Gallery in Oxfordshire opens in September and will be an opportunity to see 15 new sculptures Rob has produced over the past 3 years. The exhibition is being supported by the Isle of Man Arts Council.