Vicky Meets… Leisa Chambers of West Dean Primary School’s Art on a Postcard project

Leisa Chambers
Leisa Chambers

You’ve heard the phrase ‘answers on a postcard’ but, with a very special art exhibition scheduled for later this month, West Dean Primary School has tweaked the expression to better suit their purpose.

Entitled ‘Art on a Postcard,’ the creative fundraiser will take place at the school on Thursday 26 April (7 – 8pm), with original postcard-sized work on sale for £5 and a selection of works being auctioned.

“An Art on a Postcard exhibition was something that parents and teachers in the PTA at West Dean Primary School particularly liked as a fund raising idea,” enthused Leisa, who is part of the school’s Parent Teacher Association. “I had seen a great exhibition at Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth a few years ago and thought we could do something along the same lines.”

Explaining that children at the school have great opportunities throughout the year to participate in art competitions and events, Leisa said:

“The children really enjoy these competitions and events, so it is very exciting that we can hold an art exhibition in their school and that they can be part of it. This event has been organised by a group of parents who have a background in art and design and an interest in creating community events. We really liked the idea of an art exhibition where the local community could be involved in exhibiting alongside the children’s works of art.”

And there has been no shortage of submissions. As well as almost every West Dean Primary School child, entries from parents, teachers, friends and family and students and tutors from West Dean College, there have also been postcards contributed by local artists and artists and employees from The Coln Gallery and Pallant House Gallery.

“And cartoonists,” added Leisa, explaining that one of the school’s pupils has a talented cartoonist parent.

With prizes donated by Pallant House Book Shop for the ten most outstanding works by children there is plenty of excitement and keen anticipation surrounding the event.

“The wonderful work that has been submitted is very varied. There really is something for everyone. Some artists in our exhibition are well known nationally so it’s definitely well worth popping in,” Leisa told me.

And as well as bagging a mini work of art all ‘collectors’ will be of course be contributing to school funds.

“We hope to raise lots of money for our school, but equally important to us is that this is a community event. West Dean Pre-School will also be present and will be revealing their grand plans for their beautiful new eco-building and launching their biggest fundraiser ever! Friends and neighbours will have a chance to be part of this historic project by making a 'brick pledge'.”

Free entry, fundraising, bricks and fabulous art? Sounds like a Turner prizewinning combination not to be missed.

‘Art on as Postcard’ takes place at West Dean Primary School on Thursday 26 April, 7 – 8pm. Free entry; refreshments will be available by donation.