Drawing from the collection

Starting Sunday 25 September 2016, 14.00
£75, Members/concessions £60

Join artist Anna Saunders on a specially curated drawing course which will inspire you to view the Museum's collection in new ways, with new depth.

The series of five classes is open to all abilities and each will focus on an important object. Anna will provide step-by-step guidance on developing different styles and techniques, which will harness and reveal the art within the object. Learn and enjoy drawing methods which you can build on week to week. All materials included.

Week 1: Form and fluidity Sun 25 Sep 2016, 14.00–16.30, Room 17 In the first session draw inspiration from the Nereid Monument in Room 17, dating to 390 BC. Explore drawing techniques which capture the fluidity and grace of the sea-nymphs – statues which were placed between pillars on this monumental tomb. Sea nymphs were thought to have escorted the soul on its journey to the afterlife and so the statues present both realism and romance. The statues' elegant, fluid form will be used to create both expressive and considered drawings – communicating movement in stone.

Week 2: Power and presence Sun 2 Oct 2016, 14.00–16.30, Room 24 In this session delve deeper into mark-making techniques to build up impact in your drawings. Working from striking wooden Houseposts and reflecting on their effect, learn ways to harness the power of sculpture of this kind to create drawings with presence. The Housepost at the heart of the session originates from a latmul men's cult house in Papua New Guinea. Its strength and presence is both physical and metaphorical – its structure reflects the assertion of male power in a society that once emphasised male warfare and head-hunting.

Week 3: Volume and mass Sun 9 Oct 2016, 14.00–16.30, Room 25 In this session focus on ways to recreate the three-dimensional form on paper. Learn ways to make drawings which are alive through the impression of volume, shape and mass, working outwards from the central display of African water, beer and wine pots. Simple in design and effective in use, these pots each combine form and function flawlessly. One example is a beer pot made with two handles and three spouts. Splashed with a vegetable 'garnish', it gives ample ground for tonal drawing exercises to progress.

Week 4: Drama and expression Sun 16 Oct 2016, 14.00–16.30, Room 52 Combine what you have learnt so far and add strength to your drawings with a session framed around parts of the Palace of Darius at Persepolis in ancient Iran, with drawing techniques that will make your work striking, lively and bold.

Week 5: Detail and definition Sun 23 Oct 2016, 14.00–16.30, Room 92 To further the previous week's focus on expression, be introduced to ways of tackling detail in your drawings. Use stunningly intricate Japanese ceramics to learn which details to pick out when, why and how. Focus on contemporary Japanese ceramics such as 'Large Feather Leaves Bowl'. Made over six months in 2013, the bowl consists of 1,000 leaves which were each painstakingly attached by hand to give the impression of fragility and movement. Enjoy new ways of looking at the intricate artwork which has helped to redefine the boundaries of Japanese art in the 21st century.

In Detail

Booking fee: £1.00 per ticket

Events tickets

Drawing from the collection

Starting Sunday 25 September 2016

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  • Free entry and priority access to all special exhibitions including:

    - The BP exhibition Sunken cities: Egypt's lost worlds (19 May 2016 - 27 November 2016)
    - South Africa: the art of a nation (27 October 2016 - 26 February 2017)
    - The American Dream: pop to the present (9 March 2017 – 18 June 2017)
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