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Sculpture and the Found Object

Jane Gillings
  • Term: Autumn Weekend Workshops 2018
  • Start Date: 19 May 2018
  • End Date: 20 May 2018
  • Time: Sat & Sun, 9:30AM - 4:30PM
  • Number of Classes: 2
  • Teacher: Jane Gillings
  • Level: Beginner , Intermediate
  • Age: All Ages
  • Location: The National Art School
  • Availability: Unavailable

The readymade, found or discarded object inspires artists to rework, reinterpret and reuse materials that are thrown away. Learn to construct assemblages and sculptures from a range of objects to transform useless materials into delightful artworks. Jane Gillings introduces you to the tools and construction techniques required to fabricate new artistic forms and concepts, adding layers of metaphoric or literal meaning. With demonstrations and exercises you will learn safe handling and work practices for cutting, shaping and connecting different objects. Start collecting your own cache of objects of various shapes and sizes including discarded plastics, fabrics, wood, metal, wire, containers and second-hand items such as toys, appliances, clothing and jewellery. Take up the challenge to interrupt the waste cycle, and re-use old objects to reduce the impact on the natural environment and realise your vision in thought-provoking, creative ways.

Artwork by Danyal Goodacre

Jane Gillings

Jane Gillings holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Macquarie University and is an eleven-time exhibitor at Sculpture by the Sea. She has been a finalist in the Willoughby Sculpture Prize, Sculpture at Sawmillers, Scenic World, Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize and has shown in a number of group exhibitions in Newcastle, Gosford and Hawkesbury Regional Art Galleries, and in Sydney in Art and About and Carriage Artworks - Contemporary Art from the City Fringe, Carriageworks, Sydney. Jane has been an artist-in-residence at the Banff Centre, Canada and Fraser Studios, Chippendale. She has been teaching visual arts workshops for 20 years in TAFE colleges, community and adult arts education, council arts programs, corporate training and has facilitated many workshops for children in Sydney and around New South Wales.

Before the Spring Weekend Workshop, begins, please collect materials that can be used to make found object sculptures. If you’re not sure if something can be used, collect it anyway and we will look at its potential. You need about one big shopping bag’s worth of collectables; anything that looks interesting will be good! Please don’t buy new materials, as this course is as much about looking at how to reuse waste, as it is to make artworks from discarded objects. Make sure that your materials are as clean as you can get them. Dirty/greasy objects don’t take glue well. Colorful and multiples of the same objects are also great.

If you are having difficulty collecting used objects, it is worth a visit to Reverse Garbage, who have an amazing range of re-usable stuff. They are located at 142 Addison Rd, Marrickville NSW 2204 Tel: 9569 3132. Visit their website at

Bring an A4 notebook and pens/pencils, plus a range of collectable objects.

Here are examples of the kinds of objects to collect:

  • Shampoo bottles/drink bottles
  • Toys/dolls
  • Packing strap
  • Beads
  • Buttons
  • Sushi trays
  • Cables from electrical appliances/phone cables/ plastic ropes
  • Disposable tablecloths
  • Disposable cutlery
  • Plastic cups
  • Plastic lids
  • Plastic knitting needles
  • Whipper snipper line
  • Plastic containers
  • Board game pieces, tokens, dice, chips
  • Old felt pens and textas
  • Kinder surprise eggs/ plastic Easter eggs
  • Ball pit balls
  • Christmas cracker toys
  • Hula-hoops
  • Plastic jewellery
  • Plastic packaging
  • Cork
  • Light metals

Protective clothing and covered footwear essential