Published 27.10.2016
by Kids’ Own

Weird and wonderful things on the Virtually There Project

This week we introduce teacher Christopher McCambridge from St Colman’s Primary School and digital artist John D’Arcy, another two of the new artists and teachers joining the new phase of the Virtually There project.

Follow Kids’ Own on instagram to view our Virtually There artist take over series.

Teacher Christopher McCambridge at St Colman’s P.S. Lambeg

Art has always played an important role in my life. As a child I was enthusiastic about drawing, painting or making weird and wonderful things from cardboard, plastic or anything that I could find around my parent’s house. This love of art extended into secondary school, where I would spend many a free class in lower and upper sixth working in the art rooms, and further into University, where I completed my degree and Masters in Fine Art before finally choosing the teaching profession, completing my teaching certificate and Masters in Special Educational Needs.

I teach primary 6/7 children with moderate learning difficulties in St Colman’s Primary School and I find that the creativity and problem-solving skills that are inherent in the world of art help me in my teaching life. The children in my class love art and It is such a fantastic opportunity to be able to participate in the “Virtually There” programme. It was an honour to be chosen as one of the teachers, and I know that the children and I will get so much from working with the talented John D’Arcy.



Digital Artist John D’Arcy

I’m still not sure what I’m doing!  I’m a digital artist who keeps trying to abandon technology.  I’m a choirmaster who keeps forgetting to invite the choir.  Now I’m working with a classroom of students and I’m not even going to turn up.  Sort of.

I spent the bulk of my adolescence ‘virtually’ talking to friends and observing some fascinating developments in online social media.   I think this project is an amazing opportunity to explore the virtues and limitations of digital communication in an arts education setting.  There are so many possibilities that I’m really quite daunted.

My background is in sound performance and composition and over a number of years my practice has incorporated works for installation, video, radio and promenade performance.   I’ve just completed my postgraduate research that contemplated the intersection of voice, language, sound and location in intermedia artworks.

When I begin a new project I’m usually equal parts excited and panic-stricken.  I’m super excited to get to know this group of students and enter their world – work at their pace and find their truth.   But I’m also panic-stricken by all the potential for amazing work and technological mishaps.  Our Virtually There sessions will be based around experimental vocalisation and attentive listening.  I’ll be trying to listen doubly-attentively to make sure we tune in to the best bits.

I’m really happy to be working with Chris, he’s been really enthusiastic and has loads of great ideas.  I’m still not sure what we’re doing but I know we’re going to have lots of fun.