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T.Y. Sculpture

Creative Engagement Project -TY Sculpture

By: Julia Dolan (TY)


This year in Art, back in October our Transition Year class were introduced to the Creative Engagement Project which is sponsored by the NAPD (The National Association of Principal and Deputy Principals). For this project we decided to create a sculpture through a number of workshops with a professional sculptor Donnacha Cahill and art teacher, Mrs. Cunniffe.

In early December Donnacha Cahill first came to our school. We were all amazed by his past artwork and we were all dying to start working on our project with him.

We informed Donnacha that we wanted to create a sculpture which represented four important aspects;-

  • Academic,
  • Extra-Curricular,
  • Fun/Transition year personalities
  • Celebration of life in Glenamaddy C.S. ,remembering deceased students as well as present and future students

These ideas both individual and shared were the foundations of our sculpture. As a class group we began using shapes, colours and textures to symbolise our ideas. These four concepts later combined together to create our sculpture piece.

In the finished sculpture piece each part symbolises many things.

  • Firstly the circular structure has many messages- our lives in general, as a sphere symbolises that life never ends.
  • The book on the bottom reflects on the academic part of our lives but also symbolises that life is a story.
  • We included a megaphone which shows us speaking out and it also represents the different subjects such as the languages and art.
  • The arrows protruding from the megaphone represent the four roads to Glenamaddy, and the different directions we may take in life.
  • The rings orbiting the sphere reflect music and dance but at a deeper level they show communication and connection throughout our school community.
  • The spheres on the rings show the sporting elements of our lives. It also represents moving forward in life.
  • Finally the piece as a whole symbolises the lives of our student/school body- remembering our deceased students, mindful of our present students and an inspiration for future students.

Each student in Transition Year is reflected in this piece and each of us has different ideas about its symbolism.

On the 23th of April 2013, we held our school art exhibition and launch of our NAPD Creative Engagement Project (our sculpture).Teachers, art students and parents were all invited including guest speaker Brendan Flynn of the Cliften Arts Festival. At 4:30 p.m. our Art teacher Ms. Cunniffe gave an introduction followed by a short speech from Donnacha. The whole party then moved outside where Brendan Flynn officially unveiled our sculpture. The ceremony finished with Jennifer Joyce, Transition Year student thanking everyone involved and presenting gifts to Mr. Flynn, Nigel Cassidy (Caretaker) and Donnacha. The evening was a huge success with many art students selling pieces.

Overall a lot of time and effort went into making this more than just a “ball of metal” but a symbol of us the Transition Years of 2012- 2013 and also the “Celebration of life”.

This sculpture will be a prominent piece and will be in our school for students of the past, present and future to admire.

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Glenamaddy Community School, Church Street, Glenamaddy, Via Castlerea, Co. Galway, F45KF50 


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RCN: 20149543