Students from Oak Lodge School, a specialist arts college for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities, have created posters to be incorporated into the Shell Heritage exhibition in the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu.
Pupils from the New Forest school were invited to work on a collaborative project with the Shell Heritage Art Collection and the National Motor Museum Trust. They were tasked with creating a contemporary poster inspired by the renowned Shell collection at Beaulieu.
Eight year 10 pupils visited the Shell exhibition to see the iconic posters in the National Motor Museum, find out about the artists involved and learn about the history of Shell advertising. They looked closely at some of the vehicles on show, including the 1907 Gobron Brillié fire engine, 1901 Columbia Electric driven by Queen Alexandra and the wartime Willys Jeep. Supported by school staff, they also sketched in the grounds of Beaulieu Abbey and the ancestral Montagu home of Palace House.
On their return to school, they used their sketches and photographs to develop ideas for work which will contribute to their GCSE art coursework. Exploring a range of different media, they produced their final designs using print, textiles, painting and drawing – and the finished artworks were placed within the traditional Shell poster graphics, as pupils carefully considered the wording, style and colour of text to complete their posters.
Shell Heritage Art Collection Manager Nicky Balfour Penney, said: “It was a real privilege to meet and work with these young adults. The diversity and skill shown in their finished artwork is so impressive and they have brilliantly executed the brief that we gave them. We very much look forward to working with pupils from Oak Lodge School again in the future.”
Oak Lodge School Headteacher Mrs Sharon Burt said: “We are so proud of our pupils, who enthusiastically embraced the challenge to produce iconic Shell posters. They worked independently, using new techniques and skills to deliver a very high standard of work that precisely met the criteria of their brief. It was wonderful to see that each student had strong and individual ideas and that that translated into an amazing range of finished posters.
“A huge well done to all the pupils that took part and thank you to their teacher Miss Julie Morgan for her dedication and hard work. We would especially like to thank the National Motor Museum and Shell Heritage for the wonderful opportunity this has given our students.”
One of the most important collections of 20th century British commercial art, the Shell Heritage Art Collection includes advertising posters, original paintings, cartoons and press advertisements plus the ever-popular Shell County Guide books. Posters and paintings from the collection have been continuously on show in the museum and are also loaned regularly to museums and galleries around Britain and Europe, allowing access to the collection to around a million people a year. Its popularity is due in part to the high calibre of artists previously commissioned for Shell’s campaigns.
Stored alongside the 1.7 million items housed in the National Motor Museum Trust’s Collections Centre, the Shell Heritage Art Collection has been well cared for and has benefitted from this strong heritage association. For more information click here.