November 2003 - February 2004
This project, developed in partnership with the University of Brighton (School of Education), aimed to revive photography in the 11-16 sector. Teachers, trainee teachers and KS3 pupils worked directly with professional photographers in a series of workshops on locations throughout Brighton and at their school. The project brought professionals into schools and raised the profile of photography in schools both as a visual tool and a medium in its own right.
The project aimed to excite and motivate pupils, raise aspirations, support trainee teachers, promote careers awareness and develop a younger audience for contemporary photography in Brighton. Photography is not only a discipline in its own right, but also included in the National Curriculum for Art & Design as one of the many visual media used to communicate and express ideas. However, photography as a visual art form in schools is often neglected. This is due to a lack of specialist skills, facilities, equipment and the difficulty of working with large classes.
Research conducted in collaboration with the University of Brighton in 2002 indicated that the current state of photography in schools is poor. This project demonstrated ways of engaging with photography that can be delivered without a (permanent) darkroom or expensive equipment. Artists Anthony Lam and Milika Muritu, who themselves push the boundaries of the medium in their own practice worked together with teachers to devise imaginative, simple, inexpensive and innovative projects.
‘Make Life Beautiful!’, BPB 2003’s major group exhibition, provided an ideal starting point for this project as the show embraced a wide range of photography, from the medium’s beginning to current trends, and represented a local interest in the Dandy and its role within the Regency period in Brighton. The project demonstrated a range of uses of photography, from artistic expression and historical record to personal memory and reportage. It also introduced pupils to various career options as diverse as fashion, editorial photography and fine art.