Portrait Gallery Excursion 2021

The Monday/Tuesday GAP class thoroughly enjoyed their excursion to the National Portrait Gallery last week. We were pleased to be able to visit the Aboriginal Tent Embassy as well.

We gathered outside the gallery at 9:15am and enjoyed our morning tea in the sunshine next to the sculpture garden.

At 10am, our guides met us inside the gallery and after a briefing and toilet stop, we were divided into two groups and set off into the gallery for a special tour.

We admired a beating electrical heart exhibit. There were 120 hearts and we tried to find the fastest flashing one and the slowest one.

The group I was with stopped to admire a self-portrait by Australian artist Ken Dunn. We talked about the colours and the iconic images.

Then everyone got to try drawing their own self-portrait… BUT we had the added challenge of trying to do it with our eyes closed and not lifting our pencils from the page. Our results were quite gallery-worthy!

Our next stop involved looking at different poses that people had chosen for their portraits, trying these poses ourselves and then creating a colourful pipe-cleaner figure that we could bend into different poses.

After examining some other artworks, we created a collaborative work: everyone drew their favourite thing on some card and then we made a tower with the cards. Favourite things included lions, parents, snakes, rain, tall grass, family, and squiggly lines.

We thanked our guides after the tour, and headed out to the sculpture garden to run off some energy.

There were two long paths framed by short hedges which made great run ways, and an expanse of gravel which fascinated us too.

Our next stops were a pool and the Aboriginal Tent Embassy, before we caught a bus home, all of which you can read about in the next blog….