Our emphasis is on teaching Fine Art, with the disciplines covered including drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, fabric painting, batik and digital photography. Art History and Art Appreciation are taught at all levels but, more particularly, in the Sixth Form as part of the A level. We offer Art History as a two-year Pre-U course. Our Artist-in-Residence is appointed on an annual basis and provides guidance to all pupils.
Annual visits to European and American cultural centres are popular, as are trips to London galleries.
The Yarrow Gallery was opened in 1918 on the first Speech Day after the war ended. It was funded by Mr AF Yarrow, later Sir Alfred, in memory of his son Eric who was killed on 8 May 1915 at Ypres. The gallery is now host to five or six major exhibitions a year, including the highly popular display of Oundelians’ A level work each June.
It is a wonderful complement to the Art department’s main home in the Cloisters, where pupils have four large, light and well-equipped studios at their disposal. The emphasis of teaching at Oundle is on Fine Art, with disciplines such as drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, fabric painting, batik and digital photography covered.
Originally, the building was designed to serve as a museum for both the Arts and Sciences, with the then Headmaster, FW Sanderson, wanting the methods of research and experiment to be extended to all areas of the curriculum. The museum thus housed a collection of pictures, specimens and models to illustrate ‘the history, development and beauty of the various branches of knowledge’. In 1970, the building was adapted to create a permanent exhibition space and the tradition of staging exhibitions of professional artists began. It is perhaps rather fitting that today, the Yarrow over-looks SciTec, Oundle’s extensive home of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
During recent major restoration work, the building’s interior was stripped to reveal the original oak panels. The display area was redesigned on the ground floor and the gallery upstairs was opened up to provide further exhibition space.