The Why?s Man

"My art is place specific and people specific." George Wyllie

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Pupils at Notre Dame High School in Glasgow had been creating artwork featuring birds in 2D and moved on to 3D, looking at the work of George Wyllie and in particular his love of birds, a recurring theme in his work.

As part of the online support for schools, teachers can access 750 photographs of his work and the Notre Dame pupils found out about his Berlin Burd, created as a protest against the Berlin Wall; his Assembly of Robins, created one Christmas when he decorated the Assembly Rooms in Edinburgh, with 250 robins, with the help of a lot of school pupils; and they looked at many more of his bird sculptures, big and small.

Progressing from their drawings the S1 pupils made peacocks and eagle 'feathers' out of willow and tissue paper. Then they' painted designs onto the individual 'feathers'.

And as well as moving from 2D to 3D, pupils are also moving from an individual piece of work to a group sculpture, true to George Wyllie's collaborative way of working

The group sculptures are large, reflecting the scale of much of George Wyllie's work. His True Goose, created in Islay was over 10m tall!

S1 Notre Dame's paper boats
S1 Notre Dame bird sculptures
*Scottish Schools GW Archive

George Wyllie Education Initiative

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