Stamford Hill Primary School pupils meet Sebastian Coe
By poppy_smith | Sunday, July 15, 2012, 18:32
Three pupils from Stamford Hill Primary School and local Haringey artist Nicola Green last week managed to get a slot in the diary of London's busiest man, Chair of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) Lord Sebastian Coe.
Imani George, Lindona Sokoli and Serhat Kinali all in year 6 travelled with Nicola to LOCOG's HQ in Canary Wharf last Monday to present Lord Coe with a portrait of him that they collectively worked on as part of a unique Olympic 2012 art project and collection for Haringey.
Lord Coe who trained in the borough before winning his first Olympic Gold Medal in 1980, was so impressed when he originally saw the portrait a few months ago, that despite the Games starting in a matter of days, said he was only too happy to take some time out of his hectic schedule to meet with Imani, Lindona, Serhat and Nicola.
To celebrate Olympian ideals and the regeneration of the capital for London 2012, 11 local Haringey artists were commissioned by Haringey Council to create a unique Olympic 2012 art collection called Oooooh Art for the borough. Each artist was chosen to represent a specific discipline, spanning photography to illustration.
The artists were asked to create one piece of work made by themselves and another by working with local school children.
Nicola Green was commissioned to create an artwork centred on Lord Coe and worked with pupils at Stamford Hill Primary School, running visual storytelling workshops in which the pupils created artwork from images of different Olympic sports.
Inspired by the light of the Olympic torch, Nicola and Finsbury Park framers John Jones invented a fluorescent perspex frame for Lord Coe's portrait which uses no power but glows as if lit from within.
Inspired by the students' work, Nicola then developed 26 dynamic representations of athletes in action, illustrating the power of the Games to inspire a new generation.
Speaking about presenting Lord Coe with the portrait, Nicola said she was thrilled that he was able to meet with her and the pupils from Stamford Hill Primary:
"Diversity was a key reason why London, one of the most multicultural cities in the world, was chosen to host the Games in the bidding process. I wanted the kids in Haringey to feel connected to this inspiring time in this city's history, and to show them how they could use photography, drawing and painting to tell their own stories of what the Games mean to them. Lord Coe trained in Haringey and his story shows how international success always begins with hard work in a local community."
Both the portrait of Lord Coe and the work produced by the children from Stamford Hill Primary School is part of OOOOOH ART exhibition, which has been now been classified as an official Cultural Olympiad Project.
The exhibition will be on display at Bruce Castle Museum from 25 July to 23 September 2012.
Once the games are over, the art collection will then move to Haringey's archive (also at Bruce Castle Museum) which can be used by schools, museums and libraries