School Workshops with James Ort

“All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”

Pablo Picasso

I completely relate to the sentiment behind this quote (though artists can be female too Mr Picasso – tut, tut!).

There is a problem with today’s current educational system. It has a strong bias to the traditionally more academic subjects; there is also only right and being wrong is frowned upon. This may work for some children but those who’s minds are naturally more creative are not having their needs met. They need time to explore and create without the fear of being labelled incorrect or ‘rubbish.’

For you need to take risks with art and, if you can’t then your creativity and well being can be stifled.

To add to this problem we also have the rapid advancements in modern technology. It dominates our world, shortens our attention span and we are spoon-fed the imaginations of others. These factors combined, it is little wonder that we end up with school pupils not even realising that they are capable of creating anything at all… This is such a loss for future generations and is to the detriment of all.

To summarise – the current academic system tries to put well-rounded wanna-be artists in square boxes. It’s just not a good fit. And that’s where I come in – I want to change the shape of the box!

What I Do:

  • I lead school-based creative workshops specialising in clay, sculpture and also wire.
  • They can be bespoke projects designed to match your school’s requirements or tried and tested workshops.

Why me?

  • I am a professional male artist making a living from my art and through teaching.
  • I have over 6 years experience of teaching people of all ages including children.
  • I have worked with over 20 schools and youth groups.
  • I am fun, encouraging and engaging.

Why explore clay or sculpture?

  • There tends to be a 2D bias in schools so sculpture is a less well known medium to school children.
  • Very few schools have kilns anymore so children are not exposed to the joys of clay.
  • Both clay and sculpture is incredibly tactile and engaging. The liveliest of classrooms can be silenced by the captivating powers of clay!
  • Sculpting can change people’s lives for the better.

Past Projects:

I have run a large number of projects at different levels of scale. Some pictures are included below: