Back to Get Involved

The work of volunteers has made a huge contribution to the success of Project Art Works. The experience that we offer here is unique, and one which has the potential to transform the lives of both volunteers and our participants.

There are many different opportunities for volunteering within Project Art Works but we would encourage those interested to look first at the following three activity areas:

Art Breaks

Art Breaks happen periodically in school holidays, and within these we deliver of our popular art workshops benefitting young people aged 4-19 with high support needs and their families from across East Sussex. Art Breaks happen either here at our workshops in Hastings or at various sites within the area.

The workshops provide stimulating and fun creative activities, and support through shared activities for parents/carers and their children. Working with professional artists, young people can explore different processes and media including painting, drawing, printmaking, filmmaking and large-scale 3-D construction.

Tuesday Studios

Tuesday Studios offers 7 people and their support teams, an opportunity to engage in dynamic contemporary visual art activities.  The project takes place once a week over 36 weeks at our studio base in Hastings.

Participants arrive at our studio in central Hastings for 10.30. The artist team set up the studio prior to this with video and light projections to create sensory environments. They also set up individual work stations/tables with materials and activities. Each morning they work intensively one to one with participants. Ways of communicating non-verbally are established through eye movement; gesture, behaviour and signing. In this way, participants indicate their preferred activity. The artists use person centred approaches to help them stay focussed and involved. Participants may choose to work with each other – eg. taking turns to paint on a large canvas. Lunch is communal and inclusive, in an open plan office – a chance to develop relationships and encourage everyday skills – getting drinks, clearing plates etc. After lunch the group enjoy an activity in the local park – a community setting – where they might make large drawings or film etc. They then all come back to the studio and the artists continue to support individual or joint activities. Participants are often positively challenged by activities such as trying unfamiliar materials.

The project has 3 primary outcomes: reducing isolation; improving non-verbal communication skills, confidence and connection and fostering tolerance and understanding in the wider public.

Wednesday Mentoring Studios

The Mentoring Studios enables 7 people to develop their creative practice alongside an Artist Mentor. The project takes place once a week over 36 weeks at our studio base in Hastings.

One of the key differences between learning disabled and non–learning disabled artists of distinction is that the former tend not to have an idea of themselves as ‘artists’ but rather take a pure and wonderfully humble enjoyment of their creativity.

Mentoring Studios enables them to explore their potential as artists. We have created an artist studio setting where 7 individuals, with the support of their family and key people in their lives, can further their learning and take more control over their own trajectory as professional artists. Studio conditions promote further and deeper understanding of:

  •  the preparation of materials and use of media such as stretching canvases  and the use of different paints
  • their own visual language and how to develop this
  • preparation and installation of exhibitions
  • input into their own on-line gallery
  • the recording, cataloguing and archiving of their work
  • talking/communicating to others about their work

click here to link to our Volunteering Policy

click here to link to our Volunteers Workshop Guidelines

To get in touch with us regarding volunteering please use the email address below.
We always aim to get back to you within 48 hours


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