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Inspirational art

On the afternoon of Tuesday 4 October, 30 Year 10 Art GCSE pupils visited Farley Farm House in Chiddingly, where they immersed themselves in the Sussex home and gardens of the Surrealist Roland Penrose and his American wife the photographer Lee Miller.  

They had a guided tour of the house affording an opportunity to hear about their fascinating lives; Lee Miller as a Vogue model turned front-line War photographer and Roland Penrose, a painter and major promoter of the Surrealist group. The students were inspired by the outstanding collection of painting and sculptures by close friends including Max Ernst, Picasso and Man Ray, as well as Penrose himself. 

In the autumn sun, the students made observational drawings of sculptures in the garden and had a chance to look at Lee Miller’s wartime photographs in the barn, gathering inspiration to inform and develop their ceramic designs based on the theme ‘A Sense of Place'. Everyone came away enriched by the experience and profoundly moved by their story.