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GMS Art Trip to Venice October 2017

GMS Art Trip to Venice October 2017

At 3am on Friday 20th October, 32 tired students (Year 11 to Year 13) and four teachers boarded a coach to Gatwick airport to catch a flight to Verona, a coach to Venice and a boat to the island of Giudecca.  The following report has been written by one of our Year 13 students which illustrates the wonderful four-day cultural and visual experience every one had.


As part of our progress and investigations in Art and Design A-Level, we made a trip to one of the most beautiful and iconic cities in the world; Venice.

The four-day trip, was appreciated by each student ranging from year 11 to year 13. The collaboration of GCSE and A-Level students meant there was a diversity of ideas and interpretations of the art, culture and architecture that Venice had to offer.

On the 20th October 2017, we flew out to Venice, where we took a private boat from mainland Italy to the Generator Hostel overlooking the grand San Marco. The hazy weather washed out the scenic architecture illuminating the emerald lagoon.

After recovering from the journey, we took a Vapporetto to San Marco where we got our first taste of the Italian culture. We had the luxury of exploring the profound square admiring the intricate Venetian Gothic architecture. Here we took photographs and sketched. Moving away from the tourist infested square, we walked to the Hard Rock Café for dinner, where we enjoyed classic American style Burgers.

The following day, 21st October 2017, we took a Vapporetto to the San Marco Piazza. We walked a short distance to the elaborate Doge’s Palace, a structure of decades of authority. Infinite Renaissance statues guarded the palace, and when we explored inside we were overwhelmed with Renaissance Art engraved and painted on the ceilings and walls which contrasted with the hidden underground prison cells housed beneath these elegant rooms. The monumental scale enthralled and inspired everyone.

Following this we explored the streets; immersing ourselves in the street music, orchestras and independent shops, exhibiting classic Venetian masks, silk scarfs, glass jewellery, and endless flavours of Gelato.

We continued to Galleria dell’Accademia educating us with more Renaissance statues and paintings, many with strong religious and Christian connotations.

Stepping out of the gallery a large group of us boarded the renowned Gondolas, taking half an hour to explore the canals, giving us the opportunity to view and photograph compositions from a different perspective.

After lunch we visited a wonderful exhibition showcasing the inventions of Leonardo which were interactive and incredibly inspirational. It was fascinating to understand just how pioneering his engineering designs were.

Later that afternoon we visited another gallery; Ca’ Pesaro: International Gallery of Modern Art, where David Hockney’s vivid ‘82 Portraits and 1 Still Life’ were being exhibited alongside a wonderful permanent exhibition including works by

On the Sunday we travelled via the Vapporetto to an island named Murano, most well-known for its elaborate glass art. We visited the Murano Glass Museum, showcasing a form of art I knew very little about and underestimated its creative possibilities. It was fascinating to see how the styles of glass have evolved over the decades catering for our practical and aesthetic needs.

We were given some free time to discover the island, we visited the individual glass shops containing vases, sculptures, chandeliers, jewellery, all of diverse colours, and forms. Our Teachers then guided us back to mainland that is more built, and densely populated, called Roma, where we visited traditional, and mainstream shops, followed by a meal at the F30 Pizza Restaurant.

On final day, the 23rd October 2017 we returned to San Marco Pizza and went inside Saint Marco Basilica; a patriarchal cathedral church. The preservation of the basilica enabled us to understand the influences of Christianity in the Italian culture. The Christian iconography was translated through stain glass windows, highly decorated surfaces, sculpture and meticulous ceiling art.

We were given the opportunity to visit the Rialto Bridge, the oldest bridge across the grand canal, offering a remarkable view of the buildings along the canal and assortment of boats. We ventured through the quaint backstreets and tight alleys, discovering hidden squares, which were daubed with expressive graffiti, a printing workshop lined with freshly made wet prints.

Gondola men with stripped t-shirts, effortlessly controlled the beautifully crafted Gondola’s enriched with gold detailing, through the snug canals.

At Ca’ Pesaro; a new art installation (which was part of the Venice Bienalle) named ‘Support’ made of two 5000-pound hand sculptures, emerged from the canal. They appeared to support a 14-century building. These immense sculptures symbolised climate change, and the threat it poses to Venice, but also the power that mankind has to prevent it. When contemplating the sculpture some of us identified an unusual sense of emptiness, almost like no one lived in the ancient city. When we spoke to some of the locals they addressed the surge in tourists that deters the local residents, causing them to flee to mainland Italy.
Venice flourished with culture and energy and was a visual treat for the eyes. We all left the island inspired and exhausted from such a full itinerary! We all came away with new ideas and perspectives, that which we can apply to our upcoming projects.

By Asena Sengul – Year 13 Art& Design

GMS Art trip to Venice Oct. 2017

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