Inspired by… exhibition launch

Monday 19 May saw the culmination and celebration of seven months of creative outpouring from adult learners from around the country with the private view of the Inspired by… exhibition at Morley Gallery.

Explore the Inspired by exhibitors’ catalogue.

In attendance was Matthew Hancock MP, Minister for Skills and Enterprise, David Hughes, Chief Executive of the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) along with the 113 selected exhibitors, families and friends.

The exhibition showcases the results of Inspired by…, a national arts competition for adult learners originally launched by the Victoria and Albert Museum and entrusted to Morley Gallery for 2014.

Adult learners from across the UK have been creating and submitting works inspired by pieces in the collections of the V&A South Kensington and the V&A Museum of Childhood since last October. The exhibition showcases the best 113 entries from the 441 received, as selected by a judging panel of V&A curators.

The private view and prize-giving celebrated the exceptional talents and achievements of the exhibitors, and was one of the first major events of the new national Festival of Learning, which runs throughout May and June and culminates in Adult Learners’ Week from 14 – 20 June.

Addressing an audience of over 250 guests Matthew Hancock MP said: “There is more to life than money and there is more to life than training for the purposes of work. Education is a good in itself and it is right that we celebrate that. [It ensures] that all people get the opportunity to make the most of their innate potential and that all people get the opportunity to progress. Thank you to everybody who makes that possible, and thank you to the winners who clearly have had the inspiration in their hearts unlocked, not least thanks to the work of Morley College.”

David Hughes added: Achievement in learning is really important. We should applaud that, and applaud the effort and the creativity that people put into it. What I think tonight shows, and it sings out loud, is that the one thing learning does for all of us is that it gives us the confidence to have some self-expression. It gives us the confidence to say ‘I have some talent, I have some ability, I have something to offer back to the world’.”

David also awarded special prizes to 11 exhibitors in recognition of their outstanding entries. Winning exhibitors are listed below.

Inspired by… is open to the public from 20 May – 19 June 2014, and is supported by the V&A and NIACE. The exhibition takes place at Morley Gallery. Opening times vary. Entry is free.

See photos from the private view along with an online gallery of the winning exhibits along with their V&A inspiration.

Eleven exhibitors were selected for special prizes in a number of categories:

  • Ceramics category: Helen Jenney, College of West Anglia
  • Glass & Stained Glass category: Monica Watson, Kensington & Chelsea College of Further Education
  • Jewellery category: Ella Fearon-Low, Morley College
  • Sculpture category: Patricia Leigh, Morley College
  • Textiles & Fashion category: Jacqueline Middlebrook, Leeds College of Art
  • Theatre & Performance category: Jim Lockton, Kensington & Chelsea College of Further Education
  • Printmaking category: Margaret Cooter, City Lit
  • Drawing & Painting category: Richard Tomlin, Putney School of Art & Design
  • V&A Museum of Childhood prize: Elvire Thouvenot-Nitzan, Chelsea College of Arts
  • Victoria and Albert Museum prize: Lena Stadlen, The Art Academy
  • NIACE prize: Roxanne Gilbert, Morley College

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