A busy summer for Pocklington School’s Head of Art
Pocklington School’s Head of Art Dan Cimmermann started the new term last week following a busy summer fulfilling artistic commissions in London, York and Beirut.
The project in Beirut was organised by Rise Gallery, London in collaboration with a Lebanese charitable organisation, Ahla Fawda. Both parties are interested in the transformative power of street art in deprived or neglected urban environments.
Artists from the UK and worldwide were invited to take part alongside Lebanese artists to paint a bridge in Aley, in the hills above Beirut and collaborate on projects organised around an arts festival hosted by Ahla Fawda. The bridge was on the main road from Beirut to Damascus.
Dan painted three pieces at the bridge, a piece of work in a Lebanese prison and his largest ever mural to date, a seven metre tall wall piece overlooking the city below. Street artists such as Ben Eine and Dotmasters were among the list of artists involved, infamous for their street art in the UK and worldwide.
Also commissioned by Rise Gallery was Dan’s portrait of Mick Jagger, which formed part of the Gallery’s Warhol Month. Selected artists were invited to create a piece of work inspired by Warhol and these works were enlarged and exhibited on the streets of Croydon with 60 organised tours of the work happening during September. Dan’s painting was inspired by Warhol’s series of images of the Stone’s frontman after a trip to England in the 1970’s
Dan said: “It’s been a very busy summer and I’m delighted to have been commissioned by Rise Gallery for these two high profile projects. Working with other artists from across the world in Beirut was a totally unique experience and I hope the art we created has had a positive impact on the local community.
It’s great to now bring that experience into the classroom and to show our students the public and commercial value in creative vision. They also see that we practise what we teach, which leads to a shared empathy and enthusiasm for the art, in all its forms.”
Prior to his trip to Beirut, Dan also painted a mural of Captain Cook at The Lighthorseman pub on Fulford Road in York, organised by Art Of Protest Gallery, a new contemporary art space in York on Little Stonegate.
Now back at Pocklington School, Dan and his team have started the new term teaching in Phase One of the School’s new £2.5 million Art and Design Technology Centre. Work continues on Phase Two, which is expected to open to students in the Autumn.