School's Antony Gormley inspired sculpture has community at its heart

Year 4 pupil Amy with the rainbow wings at Ely St Mary’s Church of England Junior School. 

Year 4 pupil Amy with the rainbow wings at Ely St Mary’s Church of England Junior School. - Credit: DEMAT

Pupils at an Ely school have created a heart-shaped art installation – inspired by the sculptures of Antony Gormley.

Year 4 pupils at Ely St Mary’s Church of England Junior School have been learning about the artist, who is famous for his Angel of the North sculpture. 

Bishop Stephen Conway visited Ely St Mary’s Church of England Junior School to see the rainbow coloured wings. 

Bishop Stephen Conway visited Ely St Mary’s Church of England Junior School to see the rainbow coloured wings. - Credit: DEMAT

Eager to create their own artwork, each child created their own clay angel, which was then fired in the kiln at Ely College.

Working together, the children combined the angels to form a heart, representing hope and a sense of community.

The piece is reminiscent of Gormley’s ‘Field’ art piece, which included thousands of miniature terracotta figures looking back at the viewer, just on a smaller scale.

The angels were set out to form a heart, representing hope and a sense of community. 

The angels were set out to form a heart, representing hope and a sense of community. - Credit: DEMAT


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Year 4 pupil Iolo, who took part in the project, said:  "The angels were all different and diverse - one even looked a bit like a chef.

"It was like hundreds of little eyes were watching me, protecting me."

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The sculpture project ran alongside the Bishop of Ely’s Lent Challenge at the school, where the children were asked to design a feather and write on it a message of hope.

The feathers were combined to form a set of rainbow-coloured wings, which children were encouraged to wear and reflect on.

Bishop Stephen Conway visited the school last week to see the feathers and the pupils.

The angels were set out to form a heart, representing hope and a sense of community. 

The angels were set out to form a heart, representing hope and a sense of community. - Credit: DEMAT

Headteacher Rebecca Ireland-Curtis said the projects had really inspired the children.

“I am extremely proud with how the school community fully embraced the theme of ‘Hope’ from Bishop Stephen’s Lent Challenge,” she said.

“It is a theme that embraces all faiths and none and has allowed us to reflect on moving forward from what has been a challenging year for the whole community.

“The projects have enabled both children and staff to consider our pathway to the future which is full of hope and joy.”

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