AN ARTIST has recreated the work of a young girl and hopes to inspire children to express themselves.
Newport artist, Antony Smith – also known as Consumersmith – was a guest lecturer at Cantref Primary School, Abergavenny, earlier this year, where he gave a workshop on abstract expressionism and self-expression through art. And it seems like he had an impact.
Mr Smith said: “I hoped my workshop would help inspire young minds.
“Months later I was contacted by the school as a little girl has been painting and has been enthusiastic about the art since my visit – they sent a picture of a painting she did and wanted me to way.
“Inspired by this I decided to recreate the painting on a large scale – originally to sell and donate the money to the school, but they decided they would rather keep the painting as a symbol of the importance arts for a young mind.
The original painting of a pupil of the primary school of Cantref
The girl who created the original artwork, Mary in fourth grade, said: “Antony inspired me to paint after his studio.
“I’m pretty proud that my work has been recreated. I think other kids will see this made the newspaper and think ‘I could do this’.
“Creativity in school is important because there are no right or wrong rules.”
Normally paintings of this size by Mr Smith would cost between £600 and £800, with the artist admitting trying to paint like the child was “an interesting challenge”.
“I hope that in the future there will be more opportunities to inspire young people to express themselves freely through any medium,” Mr. Smith added.
“It’s important from an early age to give children the confidence to be themselves.”
The painting was due to be presented at Cantref Elementary School last week, but – due to local restrictions in Newport – this has been put on hold. Recess is currently taking place at Barnabas Arts House on New Ruperra Street in Newport.
(Barnabas Arts House where the painting is currently located. Photo: Chris Tinsley)
Jan Martin, owner of Barnabas Arts House and Gwent Picture Framing, made and donated the frame for Mr Smith’s replica and said: “Talent like this at such a young age is to be applauded – it’s a wonderful piece.
“Barnabas Arts House, Newport, has been instrumental in supporting art and artists for over 20 years. We have an art gallery, artist studios and a welcome inclusive approach to creativity – come check us out!