The visualisation of light and dark

Workshop in Seyðisfjarðarskóli organised by Skaftfell Art Centre for the Light Festival in Seyðisfjörður, Iceland.

Leading up to the annual Light Festival, Skaftfell art centre organised a workshop in the local children school, Seyðisfjarðarskóli, and got two artists, me and Laura Tack, to lead the workshop. The focal point was worked around the concept of Light and Darkness and was available for grades 1– 6 in Seyðisfjarðarskóli, for the total of 43 students. The results could be seen and experienced in an exhibition in the former bookshop at Austurvegur during the Light Festival last February.

One week at a time we worked closely with the children of each grade doing different exercises and talks to help with the gathering of ideas. We played, walked in silence, reflected, painted, sculpted, documented and inspired each other. The starting point of each workshop was to pose questions to encourage a discussion around the idea or the meaning of light and dark: What does it mean? how does it look like? How does it feel? What does it smell like? And how can we visualise it?

The 1st and 2nd grade made a poetic shadow play that was recorded and reenacted during the opening. The children told a story about one family´s journey from the forgotten creatures in the deepest, darkest part of the sea, up to the everyday life on land and eventually follows them back to darkness, to the many creatures that live in space. The 3rd grade focused on sculpture. They tried to interpertate light and dark through sculpture after investigating the sculpture and form around them. During the process they discovered that everything can be sculpture. They worked in two groups to make one installation that was represented both light and dark. The darkness was interpreted by a cave, that had hidden compartments inside of the sculpture.

The 4th  grade created and performed a theatre play. They created a jungle where man, woman and animal took the stage depending on they´re prime time, day or night. The 5th and 6th grade directed a stop motion video, where contemporary political issues were tackled, and light and dark represented through good and evil. The story starts with the main villain, Donald Trump, entering Iceland with the Norröna ferry in Seyðisfjörður. It tells the story of how he attempted to destroy Iceland by eating all of the countries inhabitants but eventually local fairies, unicorns and aliens save the day.