Interstellar Holiday Art

15 February 2018

Text: Melissa Gryglewski.
Images of the 2018 Youth School Holiday Program: Jess from the Youth Engagement Team & Melissa Gryglewski

From Tuesday the 16th of January to Friday the 2nd of February, participants in the Belconnen Youth Centre’s summer school holiday program were hard at work learning new skills and creating some seriously interstellar art.

The bumper three-week program marked the last weeks of the summer school holidays. The range of indoor and outdoor adventures included an energetic nerf war and expeditions to laser tag and the National Gallery’s Hyper Real exhibition.  Joined by young people from both the PCYC and the Messengers program, the attending crew also flexed their creative muscles in a pizza-making competition, and participated in a number of hands-on workshops including zine making, tie-dying t-shirts, screen printing, stencil art, and street art.
In the art activities, participants – including artist-veterans and self-proclaimed newbs alike – rose to the challenge of quickly conceiving designs and learning to apply a range new skills and techniques with gusto and diligence. For the t-shirt printing workshop this included delicately cutting out stencils and using screen printing inks and frames to produce unique and detailed t-shirt designs. Under the guidance of professional Street Artist James ‘Smalls’ Small, participants also learnt to apply various spray painting-techniques to create stunning galaxy landscapes on corflute canvases during an afternoon of ‘galaxy painting’.

New street artists also had the opportunity to try out Street Art basics in a chilled two-day workshop with Smalls. The artists learnt about spray can techniques and the use of different nozzles. They practised with spraying their initials during day one before progressing to  collaborative works on large size canvases during day two (which can now be viewed at Belconnen Youth Centre). The young artists also collaborated with Smalls to design a mural for National Capital Motors Belconnen.

This Street Art component extends beyond the school holiday program, and is open to all young people aged 12 to 25 who access the Belconnen area. Interested readers are encouraged to contact the Belconnen Youth Centre for more information.

Thanks and congratulations to all of the young people who participated in the program for your work over the three weeks, for letting me join in, and of course to Daniel, Jess, Tasi, James ‘Smalls’ who delivered the program and made it possible.

Those who are interested in future Youth School Holiday Programs and / or are interested in joining the Street Art project should check out the Belconnen Youth Centre’s facebook page and hit ‘like’

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