About this project
School Studio: Mend & Repair is this year’s iteration of The Mosaic Rooms’ annual Schools Project. It follows on from our 2021 Schools’ Project Lockdown Diaries: Over & Out.
Artists Aya Haidar, Marwan Kaabour, and Rosie Thwaites are working with three local secondary schools to explore themes of emergence, transformation and healing after two years of living with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Through engaging with and intervening on an object of their choice over four weeks, students are being guided through a reflective process, giving them alternative ways to work with ideas of healing, extending, layering, repairing, coping, adjusting, mending, and transforming.
Artists referenced in this project include Mounir Fatmi, Veronica Ryan, Leeroy New, Joe Minter, and Kobby Adi. As a jumping off point, students have been introduced to a number of artists who have used found/ ‘Readymade’ objects as part of their practice including Louise Bourgeois and Maurizio Cattelan.
The project launched with a week of in-person workshops at the schools participating in the project (Kensington Aldridge Academy, Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School, and Holland Park School). Following these kick-off workshops, students are following along a series of weekly videos and prompts prepared by the artists.
Other schools are invited to use the resources from this project to teach their own students. Contact Creative Learning Co-ordinator Becca Thomas for the School Studio: Mend & Repair Project Resource (available in July 2022) through firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the artists
Aya Haidar graduated with a BA in Fine Art from the Slade School of Fine Art, during which she completed an exchange program at School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). She then went on to graduate with an MSc in NGOs and Development from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Aya’s current work focuses on the recycling of found and disposable objects making poetic works that explore labour, displacement, domesticity, womanhood and memory, with a particular focus on the Middle East through the histories contained within aged, and culturally specific objects.
Aya has been involved in numerous social engagement projects, including Deveron Projects residency program, Mosaic Rooms’ Together Apart: Lockdown Diaries, Cubitt’s Out of Service, INIVA’s A Place for Conversation, V&A’s Record, Resist, Reframe, Tate’s Illuminating Cultures program and INIVA’s Emotional Learning Cards, as well as being selected for Hans Ulrich Obrist and Hoor Al Qasemi’s Do It Arab project (2016).
Marwan Kaabour is an independent graphic designer and visual artist from Beirut. He moved to London in 2011 to pursue a master’s degree in Graphic Design from the London College of Communication, then joined Barnbrook – one of the UK’s most formidable and celebrated design agencies – as Designer and later Senior Designer. His work with institutions, brands and individuals in the art and cultural sector ranges from creating visual identities, publication and exhibition design, to marketing campaigns, wayfinding systems and art direction.
He has worked with some of the world’s most exciting cultural institutions and publishers including Phaidon, Art Basel, V&A Museum, The National Gallery, Museum Brandhorst, Thames & Hudson, Serpentine Galleries, Hayward Gallery, Somerset House, and South London Gallery. He designed the much-celebrated Rihanna book, which was named as one of Time magazine’s best photo books of 2019.
He founded his own design practice in 2020, where he continues working and collaborating with artists and art institutions. In 2019, he founded Takweer, a platform that explores and archives queer narratives in Arab history and popular culture.
Rosie Thwaites is a creator of content for children – written, visual, multimedia and educational. She has made content for schools, charities, television and online. Her work is informed by her solid background in teaching and arts-education programme management.
Rosie studied Fine Art BA at Goldsmiths. After completing a PGCE in 2003, she taught Art and Design in the state sector for 5 years (at secondary school level). In 2007, she joined the Royal Drawing School to create a London-wide arts-education programme providing intensive engagement with art for deserving young people aged 10-18.
She now creates education content for clients such as The Mosaic Rooms, Ragdoll Production Company, Children’s Story Hour, and The New School. She was long-listed for the World Illustration Awards in 2022.