Just before half term, the pupils taking part in Lowestoft Folk visited Lowestoft Museum, to look at examples of folk art.
Museum volunteers were on hand to take part in the activities, as artists Caitlin and Vicki set the children off to look at patterns and materials and find their favourite pieces – which they then sketched, ready to show the residents at Hildesley Court this week.
So it was that yesterday there was much chatter and laughter as they shared some of their stories and talked about the things that they liked best; it was clear that everyone was really happy and excited to see each other again.
The children talked about the Dorothy Bag, created out of hundreds of tiny beads, the model furniture in the doll’s house, including a miniature lamp stand carved by hand, and the Suffolk Puff quilt, made out of dozens of small ‘puffs’ of fabric and stitched together.
They all agreed that the Lowestoft porcelain was beautiful, and several said they had no idea there was such variety of patterns and colours. We talked about some of the images and the stories they depicted; we particularly wondered about the man crossing the bridge and what had made him stop half way across.
‘Perhaps he’d seen a fish,’ suggested one child. ‘Maybe he was thinking about something,’ said another. The matter was closed when another pupil suggested that ‘maybe he’d got a text message’. ‘It’s the world they live in,’ laughed one of the residents.
The plan for the afternoon was to create patterns, based on some of the Lowestoft porcelain, but before that started, we all warmed up with a relaxing mark-making exercise – drawing to music.
Adults and children alike soon got into the rhythm of the piece, swooping their pens up the paper and then diving off, or making jagged movements, as the tempo of the music changed.
Next everyone drew bits and pieces of patterns, again based on the porcelain, and the last activity was to etch some of those patterns onto small, polystyrene discs … ready for next week’s activity.
Lowestoft Museum is now closed for the season, and so we collected the Cabinet of Curiosity and took it to Hildesley Court, so that the residents can enjoy exploring it. No doubt it will spark lots of memories and stories, and I look forward to hearing some of them, when we go back next week.