Bolton School Senior Boys

Boys’ Art Captures the Horror of Genocide

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Caroline Slifkin, an educator who teaches pupils about the Holocaust and genocide through art, led an engaging workshop with talented Y8 and Y9 artists at Bolton School Boys’ Division. Working through mixed media, pupils responded creatively, having earlier considered the definition of genocide and the stages that accompany it. The session, funded by Bolton’s Achievement Cohesion and Integration Service (ACIS), followed on from artwork created by the boys for the Holocaust Memorial Service earlier in the year. The class considered, in depth, the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda and the Bosnian genocide. 

Caroline commented: “Today, the boys have taken a cross-curricular approach and have used their artistic flair to try and understand how genocide victims responded and how they attempted to build their lives afterwards. I have been very impressed with their efforts.” 

Oliver Leahy of Y9 reflected on what the day had taught him and how he had developed his piece of art: “I have learnt about the absolute horror of genocide. My work has been influenced by the Rwanda genocide and the final solution in World War Two; it is in three pieces considering transportation to the concentration camp, at the concentration camp and liberation from the camp. My artwork is shaped as two eyes and this reflects how you are seeing everything through someone else’s viewpoint.” 

The artwork will be displayed in the Festival Hall, Bolton Town Hall alongside pieces from other local schoolchildren at the Bolton Genocide Memorial Event, which will take place on Wednesday 19 June, 1.00pm-2.15pm. The event, featuring music, poetry, speeches and art, will bring together schools, community organisations and civic leaders to remember the victims of genocide, and raise awareness of those displaced by conflict across the world.

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