Metal Liverpool led the Liverpool City Region strand of Rivers of the World 2021 to showcase 6 new collaborative artworks created with 6 Liverpool City Region partner schools, through a 20 day public exhibition on Liverpool’s historic Albert Dock. Over the Summer term 2021, Metal worked closely with our 6 Liverpool City Region partner schools l to offer a programme a high-quality creative STEAM education workshops, encouraging cross-curricular exploration of environmental themes and resulting in the development of 6 collaborative artworks created by professional artists and young people to explore rivers in local and international contexts.
Young people’s education has been significantly impacted by the Covid 19 pandemic limiting their access to cultural experiences and extracurricular activities. Rivers of the World provided opportunities for learning outside of the classroom and invited students to look ahead to how they can contribute to positive futures for our local and international communities through care for our environment. The students’ creative work was celebrated through a 20 day long exhibition on Liverpool’s historic waterfront presented in partnership with Open Eye Gallery and then toured to London to be showcased on the banks of the River Thames outside Tate Modern as part of the Totally Thames Festival (1-30 September 2021).
The project encouraged international creative collaboration in response to environmental themes and consideration of Liverpool as part of a global community after a significant period of lockdowns and limitations on connection and travel. All participating Liverpool City Region schools were paired with a partner school in Mashonaland West, Zimbabwe. The school pairings explored the same theme in their artwork enabling students to learn about Zimbabwe culture and environment through this international creative exchange. As well as having their artworks exhibited alongside their international peers, students’ collaborative artworks were also featured in a booklet alongside all other Rivers of the World participants internationally including young people from Lebanon, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Ghana, Afghanistan, Nepal, India and the UK, with all participating students in Rivers of the World around the world receiving their own copy of this booklet.
Rivers of the World exhibition at Open Eye Gallery (September 2021)
Cardinal Heenan High School students exploring in the River of the World Exhibition and viewing augmented reality artworks through their phones
Augmented reality artworks created by Broughton Hall Catholic High School and Woodchurch High School with Rivers of the World project artist Adam Sadiq
Bellerive Catholic High School students and artist Hector Dyer in Rivers of the World workshop.
‘I really enjoyed using different materials in my art work. It was also very interesting learning about salt marshes and how the River Mersey is very important to us.’ Maris Soni, Bellerive FCJ Catholic College
‘It certainly reminded a lot of people about the history of the river and what Liverpool was built on and how important it is not to forget this part of history.’ Herbie Glover, Woodchurch High School
Students at Dixons Broadgreen Academy working on their Rivers of the World artworks
Rivers of the World is an arts-based environmental learning project linking schools around the world through the study of rivers. The project is a creative exchange between Key Stage 3 pupils from Liverpool City Region and Zimbabwe, working in partnership with artists Eugene Mapondera, Adam Sadiq and Hector Dyer.
The project encourages the international exchange of creative ideas and environmental learning, providing young people with the opportunity to collaborate with professional artists, explore creative and STEM career paths, connect with students participating in the Rivers of the World project in other countries and see their artwork exhibited locally, nationally and internationally.
Rivers of the World is a Thames Festival Trust project delivered in partnership with the British Council. Since its creation in 2005, Rivers of the World has been delivered in thirty five countries around the world, currently including Malawi, Kenya, Palestine, Morocco, Ethiopia, Sudan, Lebanon, Tanzania & India and across the UK in London, Reading, Hull, Southend-on-Sea, Worcestershire, Exeter, Warrington, Halton, Peterborough, Stockton-on-Tees and Coventry.
The Liverpool strand of the project is led by Metal in partnership with Open Eye Gallery.
Participating Schools in Liverpool:
Dixons Broadgreen Academy
Broughton Hall Catholic High School
Bellerive FCJ Catholic College
The Belvedere Academy
Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School
Woodchurch High School
Participating Schools in Zimbabwe:
Sanyati Baptist High School
Jameson High School
Rimuka 1 High School
Rimuka 2 High School
Kwekwe High School
Munyati ZESA High School