Sidcot School Art Project Displayed at Glastonbury Festival

Sidcot School Art Lead Learners have joined forces with Arcadia Reach CIC, a non-profit initiative of the renowned lighting and events company Arcadia, famed for its awe-inspiring Glastonbury Festival creations, to create a new installation on display at this year’s Festival.

Evolving as a concept after Arcadia’s co-Founder, Pip Rush Jansen, visited Sidcot to deliver a careers talk, Sidcot’s students were delighted to collaborate on a Creative Engagement Project to be showcased at this year’s Glastonbury Festival. The project brief? To help organize a series of hands-on workshops exploring the exciting intersection of art, science, music, and engineering.

Thanks to generous private funding and a grant from the Ganton Educational Trust, Sidcot School was able to develop this unique project, which included not only Sidcot students but also those from Weston College.

The workshops focused on a theme of functional sustainability, challenging students to reimagine used metals and materials into new, functional works of art. Students delved into practical skills that are becoming increasingly rare in today’s world, including welding. Their creations were not destined for a shelf; the ultimate goal was to produce a collaborative art piece for display at the world-famous Glastonbury Festival.

Through collaborative brainstorming, the Sidcot and Weston students arrived at a truly stellar concept: a large-scale solar system. They then set to work diligently, using various metalwork techniques such as plasma cutting, welding, cutting, hammering, and bending to bring their vision to life.

Commenting on her experience, Saskia Key, Year 12 Art Lead Learner said:

“We worked together with Weston College to try to bring our key shared values to the forefront in our final outcome – for example, developing the sun, which we highlighted to show how global warming is affecting our world. The range of skills we learnt and needed to use required us to work closely as a team, trusting each other to develop our pieces in the short time available. I was so proud to see it on display at Glastonbury!”

Sidcot and Weston’s Solar System is currently showcased at Glastonbury Festival, alongside Arcadia’s new Dragonfly stage. Like the Solar System piece, the new Dragonfly stage reuses resources, repurposing military equipment as unifying structures and symbols of peace. The whole thing is powered by wind and solar energy, with bio-ethanol flames.

Johannah Egan, Head of Art at Sidcot said:

“Our practical workshops with Arcadia brought together students across our School community but also the local community. They explored new techniques that encouraged creativity and helped to build their confidence. It taught them to look at ‘used’ or ‘waste’ materials in new ways, making a real difference as active citizens in society. I’m so proud of the work they have achieved and especially of their final outcome. Thank you to our donors and to Arcadia Reach CIC for enabling this to happen.”

For more information on Arcadia’s work, please see:

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