Artist: Manu Muniategiandikoetxea
Class: 2nd grade students
Related themes: Coexistence
Media: Sculpture and painting
Teacher: Josu Manterola
Abetxuko School, Vitoria-Gasteiz
Materials: Cardboard boxes, paper, paint, brushes

There are three key elements in the success of Learning Through Art: the Museum educators and the teachers who make classroom immersion possible; the artists, who propose the creative projects; and the students, who give in to the pleasure of discovering and creating. Abetxuko School turned into an artistic creation workshop from the moment at which these 16 second grade children started to create an enormous joint drawing in November to visually set out concepts and generate a map of initial ideas. For twenty weeks, in sessions of one and a half hours, the kids brought these initial concepts to life. In this process, there was a dialogue between the students and the artist, in which questions and reflections were raised in relation to their immediate environment: the public and private sphere, the diversity of family models and interpersonal relations; what the city and parks are like, and how to represent this diversity through art: to do so, they used boxes and words, colors and photographs, symbolizing the individual and group work.

A specific project on a certain topic chosen by the educators is developed at each school: in this case, the starting point was coexistence. Manu encouraged the students to observe their daily environment, to reflect and talk about it, learning to argue their viewpoints and helping them to formulate their ideas and opinions. The kids in this group come from different places in the world: languages and diversity are an element of union and wealth.

The students’ visit to the exhibition devoted to Pello Irazu at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao served as inspiration for them to generate a large construction of piled up boxes. This joint sculpture also includes texts in different languages talking about diversity, coexistence, peace, families, respect… Throughout the project, the students made one or two visits to the Museum, which enabled them to directly observe the works of art exhibited in the galleries.