DURI Public School students hosted automata artist David Archer on Monday and Tuesday this week, with the students creating wacky wire critter bugs.
The project involved the students creating insects out of some recycled materials, including wire and aluminium, and other decorative pieces such as beads and buttons.
“It develops hand skills and design skills because the kids can choose their own colours and decorations,” Mr Archer said.
Mr Archer has an exhibition at Tamworth Regional Gallery with a circus and carnival theme.
“I like the genre because the boundaries are a bit blurred and there is a lot of leeway to what you can do within the genre,” he said.
“It is an escapism and a way to express myself through my art.”
Mr Archer said each critter made by the students was individual and unique and all included kinetic action where the wings flap when a handle was turned.
“All components are similar but the end result is unique,” he said.
The students finished the two-day workshop by naming their creatures and painting a background for them or writing a story or poem about their creatures.
“With art, people want to make something and have a product to show,” Mr Archer said.
“With these critters the students can take them home and it might enthuse them to create at home.
“The ultimate goal was to have fun with colours and decorations and showing them how they work with different materials.”
Mr Archer is running a workshop at Peel High this week which would involve the same sort of projects.
“I’m interested to see how the more mature kids will see the project,” he said.
“I think the high school students will be more design-oriented.”
Mr Archer has been an artist “formally” for 25 years, but said he’d always created works around the kitchen table.