For all of Term 3 and half of Term 2 in 2016, we were fortunate to have NabilahNordin, a Singaporean visual artist, working at UWCSEA Dover.
Nabilah has been working to create some beautiful structures using materials found around the campus. Her work involves constructing a form and then covering it with a mixture of plaster and adhesive. The work is then painted and added to with a variety of found materials. It is a wrestling match between modernist painting and sculptural form.
The children have been fascinated with this process and many have had the opportunity to work with Nabilah, using materials and techniques that they haven’t used before. They have enjoyed talking to her about her work and her life as an artist. After gaining a Master of Contemporary Art from The University of Melbourne, Nabilah has become a full time working artist and is keen to share her work with the community she lives in. She has already had three solo exhibitions and many group ones. She was keen to spend time at UWCSEA and has been inspired by the children and the materials that were available here on campus. Nabilah has produced a series of abstract sculptures. Each one has a unique and quirky form and the children have enjoyed finding their own forms within them.
Nabilah had this to say about her time at UWCSEA:
“Collaborating with the students has been the most exciting part of my art residency at UWCSEA. Together, we have created works that celebrate failure, chance and improvisation.
The collaborative process has been open ended. Students are very much involved in the thinking and making. As a team, we decide on the formal qualities of the sculptures, such as the colours, shape and height. Having my studio outside has functioned like an open studio where all the decisions we made previously often go out the door. The sculptures become free for anybody to change. I can go over someone's work and someone else can come in later to go over mine to keep moving the work in a new direction.
I have been inspired by the many passing conversations and images that the primary school students have shared with me. This gives me so much to respond to. I am now completing a large collection of small scale sculptures in response to my stay at UWCSEA.”
Nabilah will soon be going to Melbourne to take up a residency in a new school. We wish her every success.
If you would like to see more of Nabilah’s work, please visit her website.