LUMA and the Schools Program
The vision of our Schools Project is to foster an ongoing relationship with all the schools and students in our region, where teachers and students of all ages have the chance to participate in and engage with public art. Working with SILO and the LUMA Team, local schools work on the projects throughout the year to create installations that can be exhibited at LUMA over Queen’s Birthday weekend.
Our Schools Program has been developed by Wakatipu Highschool art teacher Rebecca Lund. With help and technical production provided by the SILO team, together we have helped to create some amazing sculptural elements that have been enjoyed by thousands of LUMA attendees.
In 2018 the schools project was refined further, with more local schools coming into the project. A Scheme of Work was developed under the umbrella theme of sustainability, with ‘LUMA leaders’ being introduced into some primary schools to help deliver the projects whilst teaching younger students about sustainability and the impact of our consumption of plastics on the environment.
2019 saw even more students and teachers introduced to the program, now recognised to be a key creative opportunity for the students, having now been integrated into the Wakatipu High Schools curriculum. The LUMA Schools Program has grown to include most of the schools in the Wakatipu Basin.
Also in 2019 the Ministry of Education published the Schools Project on their website TKI (Technology Online), which informs and inspires teachers across NZ. They used our schools work as a case study for exceptional work incorporating the community, schools and authentic stakeholders.
The sculptures usually consist of multiples of an idea, for example Our Patch was a field of hand made light flowers, each one crafted by the students, creating a tapestry of illuminated creativity. The projects concentrate on a single deliverable and are designed to ensure that the end product is of a very high standard. It takes 8 months of work to realise the end result that’s exhibited over Queen’s Birthday Weekend.
Once the concepts are decided upon students are given the tasks of creating a brief, developing their own concepts, creating prototypes and refining their ideas. SILO team members make regular visits to the schools to check on progress and help to refine the ideas further to ensure students can put the creations together in time for LUMA. Depending on the project some students are given specific tasks, such as creating a soundscape to accompany an installation. Students are then given the opportunity to present their finished light sculptures to SILO for inclusion in LUMA.
Students also have the opportunity to take part in the installation of the work which is a great part of the creative process, providing them with great real world experience.
Here are some of the fantastic works that have been exhibited at LUMA: