As part of the ‘Eating Habits’ project students visited the British Museum for a workshop to generate ideas. We started off by looking at the Hoxne Hoard Pepper Pot from Roman times. Students discussed the value of spices at this time and connections were made to the work of Ernesto Netto, a contemporary artist who uses spices and strong smelling materials in his large installations, evoking memory and encouraging audience participation.
We then moved onto another room where we looked at Greek vases and urns they discussed how the decorations were used to depict everyday scenes and tell stories. The students were then introduced to Edwardian satirical illustrations in particular William Hogarth’s and compared these to the work of contemporary Ceramicist Grayson Perry.
Lastly we moved onto the Japanese galleries where we looked at rituals such as the tea ceremony. In particular students focussed on the importance of the placing and positioning of objects. Students were encouraged to consider rituals within their own culture and they started an exercise in mapping these on squared paper having looked at the artist James Brooks
It was a great opportunity to consider how contemporary artists draw on the past for ideas and hopefully help our students to as well.