Thursday I had another After School club to take the Pictish, Animal Art workshop to. This is part of Arts play Highlands ‘Hare, Moon and Birdsong’ project. This session was at an after school club at a community centre in Inverness.
The session was a great success with a lovely atmosphere. Some reluctant participants soon became the most productive ones.
Many of the children were studying the Romans at school, but were less aware of the Picts. There was a lot of banter about football colours, so incorperated this as having the Romans one colour and Picts another. We also talked about life before cars and tescos, what it would be like hunting for your own food. It is great how art, play and education can all work together.
We were also able to take some time to practice very simple celtic knotwork patterns, finding simple together ways to achieve this starting with a smiley face. Some of the boys had lots of drawing questions, so we went into some pretty complex perspective and foreshortening lessons once they’d finished their own standing stones. Art play is a great vehicle, it could be used in all school ‘lessons’ !
I have just started studying the mystery language of the Picts. Since studying the Picts they have won my respect, I totally underestimated them as a primitive race of people.
The Picts have always got a bad press, somehow seen in isolation from everything else happening historically, when the main book about them for years was called ‘ the problem of the picts’. They were seen as mysterious therefore a nuisance academically. Prehaps we’re still influenced by the Roman propaganda about them! Going around these after schools clubs doing Pictish art, just a couple of miles away from where Pictish stones stand, the children know all about the Romans ( who were never here ) , but nothing of the Picts.
The Picts look like an extremely ancient people who are an enigma. I fell into the trap like most to Roman propaganda.