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Pupils from Abbey Grange Academy admiring their sculpture Prayer Hands, made with artist Zara Worth as part of Yorkshire Sculpture 2019. Photography Nick Singleton

Engagement Project: Abbey Grange Academy and Zara Worth

We have been working with five schools in Leeds and Wakefield on artist-led projects, with school and gallery visits and sculptures from our renowned art collections going into classrooms.

Artist Zara Worth worked in partnership with the Henry Moore Institute to deliver an ambitious sculpture project with 47 year 9 pupils at Abbey Grange Academy in Leeds.

The project resulted in the creation of a new collaborative piece, Prayer Hands (iPad poses), which consists of 94 golden hands. Zara supported the pupils to create plaster casts of their hands in poses, mimicking how they use their hands with their school iPads. The casts were painted gold and displayed together to form the piece, which references religious iconography and explores the way we interact physically with our handheld devices, and the value we place on our relationships with them.  The project allowed pupils to learn about the process of casting using materials such as alginate and plaster.

Prayer Hands (iPad poses) 2019, Zara Worth and Abbey Grange Students, YSI 2019. Image: Nick Singleton

The pupils were also able to visit all of the Yorkshire Sculpture International galleries – Henry Moore Institute, Leeds Art Gallery, The Hepworth Wakefield and Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

The project culminated in pupils choosing a sculpture from the Leeds sculpture collection to be exhibited in their school for a day, supported by ArtUK. The selected sculpture, AG5 by Eduardo Paolozzi, allowed the students to continue to explore the themes brought to the project by Zara Worth and their collaborative sculpture, which was exhibited alongside Paolozzi’s sculpture in the school and visited by over 400 people throughout the day. The day included tours of the sculptures, a ‘private view’ for pupils, parents and staff, sculpture-making workshops and assemblies to explore Paolozzi’s work with pupils in years 7, 8 and 10.

About Zara Worth

Our engagement programme

Yorkshire Sculpture International 2019 had an extensive engagement programme, working with schools, universities, communities and artists.

We explored sculpture with people of all ages, connecting them with the materials and processes used in making sculpture today and showing how sculpture can be found all around us.

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