Dappy’s conclusion

I had a week between my West Dean show and the end of the school term to create the eight glass panels that I was making for DUCKs as the conclusion to my school commission. The panels illustrated eight scenes from my story of Dappy the Duck and each panel was 50x50cm with kiln formed glass images and screenprinted text, so there was a lot of glass to make! Working late into the night every evening was the only way I was going to get it done and I pretty much squeezed two weeks’ work into one week. There was the slight disaster where one of my panels slid into two others in the kiln, but two out of the three panels could be salvaged and, though I needed the extra weekend to remake the unsalvageable piece, I just about made the deadline of the final assembly of the year on Monday morning to present the eight panels to the school.

The panels were hinged together in two sets of four so that they formed a kind of summary of the story. To fill in all the gaps, I also provided the school with the storybook itself, illustrated and printed out so that future classes could read the story and link it to the glass panels.

Ducks panels installed
A few days later after the end of the term, I came back to help install the eight panels in the foyer of the school. The panels were hung low on the wall, and when the children return in September next academic year they will be encouraged to touch the tactile surfaces of the glass. Also on display in the foyer will be the finished model of Dappy the Duck, which was made in collaboration with the children in the accompanying school workshop sessions.

Dappy the Duck

It was an exhausting couple of weeks but very enjoyable to be working with such brilliant children. Who’d have thought a bunch of four year olds could paint a model so beautifully?! Thanks to Jo Parker who instigated and arranged the project as well as the installation of the final work, Helen Dolby who coordinated the parents’ fundraising to provide the budget for the project and Heather Friell, the outgoing headmistress under whose directorship the project was possible.

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