Interview – Sarah Blake, (Education Officer, Fitzwilliam Museum / End House Arts)

Child participating in Botticelli inspired workshop at the Cambridge Art Salon Jan 2012

Tell us about what you do …

… well… I’m an artist. I trained as a bronze sculptor but ‘moved’ into painting in 1993 on a trip to Greek Islands – I just was captivated by the colours! I also use words and love poetry and combining them with paintings. I work as a Education Officer at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, teaching in the galleries and in the Studio – I love teaching and talking with people about art. I set up End House Arts and Crafts as a way to extend this into the community – I started my career as a community artist 20 years ago!

Three words to describe your own art and crafts.

Energy, Stillness and Transition

What inspires you?

The point at which ‘things’ interact; watching landscapes, sea, skies, how they act on each other. Then into the detail of plants or rocks or shells. I am thinking alot about at what point one thing becomes another, sometimes in a very abstract or kinetic way. I love Antiquities and Chinese art.
Why is art so important for the community? Happiness and joy – creating unique purposeful work, having space and opportunity to have a voice. Life – expression, communicating, reacting, being an individual and understanding others. Hum – bit of a tall order!

What is unique about your approach to teaching art?

Is it unique? I am hugely enthusiastic and use humour so I hope people relax and join in. But I also challenge people to really look at things and draw/paint what they see and express. I like people and art and hope to enthuse others!

Any tips to help parents and children in Cambridge embrace art at home?

Firstly join in! try not to be fussy or tidy or clean. Set out a time and space and just have some fun – keep it short and sweet. Don’t try to direct too much let it flow. Use trips out to places and stories and nature/science inspire you. Try to have your families art up in the house or make a huge scrap book. If your kids like lego – use that to build sculptures – Let everyone have input into what to make/do.

Where can we find you?

contact me : come along to classes at the lovely Cambridge Art Salon or pop into the Fitzwilliam Museum!

Sarah is facilitating a family arts workshop at the Cambridge Art Salon, Sunday 5th February Stories, Crafting and exploring Chinese Dragons in Art …

Sunday 5 February 10.30 – 11.30am

Families with children aged 3 – 9 years accompanied by parent/carers

£3 per child, drop-in pay at the door