Grade 5 visits spray-painting artist

v6The grade 5 DLP class took ACTION!

A few weeks back, during our unit of inquiry on How We Express Ourselves, the grade 5 students looked at different art movements and artists from different periods. One of the artists presented to the students is Banksy, the British street artist who shares strong messages through graffiti.

As an extension of the Dual Language Programme, the class wondered about street art closer by. They discovered that DENIS MEYERS is a French-speaking Belgian artist who became quite well-known recently thanks to an original project he conducted in Ixelles in 2016-17(https://www.remember-souvenir.me/). The class watched a video and read articles about him. His project on the abandoned Solvay building triggered the interest of the children. As they read and asked genuine questions that remained unanswered, Ashlyn wondered whether they could get in touch with this intriguing person. This was the beginning of the adventure for the 10 students who started to wait for responses and permission. Denis Meyers engaged in an exchange of messages with MS Verbert, which lead to a visit of the atelier in Anderlecht.

The girls loaded the minibus driven by Ms Verbert and the boys rode with Mrs de Combejean. The atelier is located right by the canal in a warehouse. The place is huge and cold but nobody cares. The walls are covered with art pieces. The doors and windows rescued from the Solvay building before its destruction are hanging on the walls. After watching the videos, it was an incredible feeling to recognise the pieces that were seen by hundreds of people at the ‘Souvenirs’ Exhibition and that are featured in the video clip of ‘Never Sleep, Never Die’ by Kid Noize .

Seeing the art was fabulous, watching the artist demonstrate how to paint skulls on a wall was magic, but having a go at spray painting was the highlight of the visit. Denis Meyers had non-toxic, water based paint ready for the students to test their skills. The pictures evolved on the papers, layer after layer. Mastering the skinning caps is not as easy as it seems but the results are surprising. As soon as possible, the pictures will be exhibited in school. The pictures were not dry and will be picked up later but everyone came back with the autograph of Denis Meyers spray-painted on the back of the shirts.

And for anyone wondering, Denis Meyers does not do graffiti. He does spray-painting, ‘il bombe’, and only upon request or with authorisation!

Thank you Denis Meyers for this experience!