New collection of artwork as 40th anniversary year draws to a close.

An eye-catching collection of illustrations depicting key moments in its history has been acquired by Lighthouse, Poole’s centre for the arts as it brings its year of fortieth anniversary celebrations to a close.

The fifteen works, on show in the Mezzanine Gallery until the end of February, were created as part of Ferndown Middle School’s on-going partnership with Lighthouse by Year 7 and 8 students with the help of final year illustration undergraduates at Arts University Bournemouth and Martin Brown, the Dorset-based illustrator best known for his work on the Horrible Histories books.

“This work is hugely impressive and has made a real impression on so many of our audiences and visitors to Lighthouse – we’re thrilled to have been able to acquire the illustrations permanently,” says Sara St George, head of sales and marketing at Lighthouse.

The Ferndown pupils were given access to an unexplored archive of posters, programmes, photographs, newspaper clippings, architectural plans and memorabilia found in a store cupboard at Lighthouse. They chose to work on a range of subjects to illustrate including Michael Jackson, Princess Diana, Wham, Oasis, Rowan Atkinson and Sir Ian McKellen, who was once refused entry to the theatre in costume midway through a production of Twelfth Night – because he didn’t have a ticket!

Martin Brown spent a day at the school working with the young illustrators on ways they could condense events into single drawings, sometimes made with only a few lines. Praising the young artists as “talented, motivated and fun,” he joined them to visit the Museum of Design in Plastic at Arts University Bournemouth where they worked with illustration undergraduates on how best to present the drawings for maximum impact.

“The most positive outcome from this project was the fantastic collaboration between AUB, Lighthouse and Ferndown Middle School,” says Jerry Whitton, Ferndown Middle’s Head of Design Technology. “It was a real team effort bonded by the skills and expertise of Martin Brown. All involved gained so much from this collaboration.”

The illustrations will go on permanent display at Lighthouse around the Beacon café area and backstage in the Green Room.

The work was created by:

Ferndown Middle School. Jerry Whitton, Head of Design Technology. Emma Wilson, Jasmine Bailey, Nageeba Hassan, Sophie Ing, Hannah Edmonds, Amber Hall, Jake Cross, Emily Doswell, Georgia Brown, Olivia Holland, Leonie Watts, Selin Nugent, Emelia Butler, Erin Hayter, Millie Orr, Chloe Averill.

Arts University Bournemouth. Deano Pickering, Senior Projects Officer for Widening Participation. Margarita Louka, Misia Paczek, Sarah Munro, Toby Drew, Vanessa Oliveira.

Published 7 February 2019