MAPS Mentoring recently hosted a pottery workshop led by a local ceramicist, and funded by The Arts Society. Many of the young people attending had no previous experience with clay. The intention of the workshop was to introduce young people to the malleability of clay as a channel for self expression.
A young girl, who is gradually losing her eyesight due to a degenerative disease, found immense joy in manipulating the clay and made a very poignant statement:
"Being half blind, the clay feels really satisfying for me".
She enjoyed the different contours and textures the clay offered, using the medium to articulate her visions and interests and creating forms that resonated with her broader passions.
For some, working with the unfamiliarity of clay took time and patience to familiarise themselves with the medium and to gain the confidence to trust the process and themselves. For one young person this involved a process of making marks in the clay to explore and then rolling the clay out erasing the marks to discover the adaptability and possibilities of the medium. Eventually this young person created an interactive piece reflecting his interests.
One young person experiencing social anxiety expressed her concerns and fears prior to the workshop. She shared afterwards that:
"Actually it was really good, I had a good time".
Through the malleability of clay young people were able to explore personal adaptability, resilience and creativity. The workshop became a fun space for self expression clearly illustrated by the diverse and captivating pieces that emerged from the hands of these young artists.
A huge thank you to The Arts Society for funding a very special experience for our young people.