Teacher-artists: Nurul’ain Azilah, Khairunnisa’ Shamsuri &Farida Bee Abdul Rahman
Sengkang Primary School
Q: Could you please introduce yourselves?
We are Ain, Farida and Nisa from Seng Kang Primary School.
Ain was a Generalist teacher before attending the first Art Teachers Practitioner Programme (ATPP) conducted by STAR. She proceeded to obtain her Advanced Diploma in Primary Art Education from the National Institute of Education. Now she is a full-fledged Art teacher who enjoys sharing art pedagogies with her colleagues and the fraternity.
Farida was a cross-level Art teacher who was also a drama teacher. She currently works on ensuring that the school’s Art curriculum evolves and has a spiral learning effect on the students.
Nisa is the youngest member of the department who is very well-versed in anything relating to technology, having hailed from the Nanyang Technology University’s Fine Arts faculty majoring in Animation. The youngest member of our team, she often pushes the department to go beyond our comfort zone and shares ideas on how she experiments with new ideas in her Art classes.
Q: Could you tell us more about your artwork, “Intersection”?
Our artwork comprises 3 sculptures representing our journey through this pandemic. The sturdiness of each sculpture varies, symbolising the diversity in our students. Each sculpture needed to be primed in a different way as we created the designs on its surfaces. These designs exemplify our teaching framework used in our curriculum.
However, the necessity of adjustments to teaching during the pandemic situation in 2020 pushed our team out of our comfort zones. Leveraging on technology became a new norm and capturing our students’ learning outside of the conventional art lesson formats became a new challenge to assess our students’ learning outcomes.
We were inspired to metaphorically represent the impact of our revised pedagogy on our students’ learning in this artwork. ‘X’ marks the spot where the placement of light becomes vital for the shadows and the sculpture to exist as an entirety.
Q: Discuss your interactions with the curator(s) and how it has led to changes in your artwork.
When we first started brainstorming and conceptualising our ideas for the a x edge 2021 submission, we did not expect our artwork to go through many cycles of change, which resulted in what it is today.
Due to the COVID-19 safe management measures, discussions and queries were made mostly through text messages. Our curator, Michael, evoked thought-provoking questions that made us rethink our designs, material used as well as how our artwork should be to be presented to our viewers. We played around with the materials, went about making various prototypes and constantly sought Michael’s honest opinions.
We also had concerns regarding the lighting, shadow casting in relation to the material used, but Michael gave us options to help move our artwork forward.
We were grateful for the sharing session held at STAR between teacher-artists and the curator. The session was useful because we received feedback and ideas from other points of views, which we had not thought of before.
As a team, we are truly appreciative of the learning opportunities we shared with Michael and fellow teacher-artists. It has helped us to hone our craft and enriched our journey as art teachers.