Going with the grain

Artist Nicole Andrijevic (centre, back) with students (from left) Jaime Arlow, Trinity Gordon, Slade Scherini, Molly-Rose Prince and Mali-Star Burns. Picture: Emma Goodwin d426595
Artist Nicole Andrijevic (centre, back) with students (from left) Jaime Arlow, Trinity Gordon, Slade Scherini, Molly-Rose Prince and Mali-Star Burns. Picture: Emma Goodwin d426595

Artist-in-residence Nicole Andrijevic created the temporary sand mandala with students, formally presenting it to the school last Wednesday.

Art teacher Amy Chalkley said every student was involved in creating the piece, which took four days to complete.

‘Children would come of their own accord before and after school and during the day to observe the development of the mandala and would bring their parents to show off the progress,’ she said.

‘The enthusiasm towards this whole school project was highly contagious, with members from the local community making positive comments and making a point of visiting the art piece.

‘It became a real talking piece and the ties to our school culture and location was directly related to each layer of the mandala.’

Ms Chalkley said students collected natural items from nearby parks during their art classes, which they added to the mandala.

She said they celebrated its completion by showing a video of the first grains being poured through to the final artwork, which was swept up after the September 24 presentation.

‘It was lovely to see all faces in the audience enthralled and reminiscing on the process undertaken,’ Ms Chalkley said.

‘Nicole has developed a unique way of working that honours the ancient tradition of sand mandalas in a contemporary light.

‘Not unlike the Tibetan Buddhist mandalas, Nicole’s mandalas are a visual meditation that occur in-situ, resonating their unique energies within the space and land.

‘The artworks are as much about the process as they are about the finished piece.

‘At the end of every exhibition, these ephemeral works are swept away, reminding us of the impermanence of life and the beauty that is found within fleeting moments.’

The Quinns Rocks artist has been creating art using sand and sugar since 2005 and is doing a diploma of education at Edith Cowan University, devising a program for children to create mandalas with her.