'Children's Turner prize' hails artists of the future

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The Independent Online

The brilliant creativity - and often woeful underfunding - of art education in schools was revealed yesterday at the Artworks awards at the Tate Modern in London.

The awards, billed as the "children's Turner prize", have become a showcase for the best young artists in the country, with the winning entries from 30 schools going on display in the foyer of the Tate Modern.

Trinity Catholic technology college in Warwick won awards in two categories - for an installation inspired by a visit to Sachenhausen concentration camp in Germany and a life drawing collaboration with the artist Alison Lambert - while Holme Hall primary school in Chesterfield celebrated its fourth consecutive year of success with a series of sculptures in the style of Barbara Hepworth.

Other winning work included a photographic collage by pupils at Dartmouth High School in Great Barr, Birmingham, recording a fire that destroyed a third of their school, a digital reworking of Hogarth's Marriage à la Mode , and photography drawing on the work of Andreas Gursky.

The awards, of £2000 and a print by the artist Marc Quinn, were presented by Blur's Damon Albarn and the sculptor Antony Gormley at a ceremony at Tate Modern yesterday.

But a report compiled by the awards' sponsors, The Clore Duffield foundation, released yesterday to coincide with Children's Art Day, revealed that the creative arts remain the poor relation of core subjects in many schools. Some primary schools are spending just 15p a year per child on equipment for studying art and design, according to the report, State of the Art , while others spend up to £30 each. Secondary school spending ranges from £130 per pupil to just £1.

Even within individual local education authorities there were wide variations. Spending on art and craft at one secondary school was just 99p per child, compared to £9.56 at another school within the same authority.

When it comes to books, art and design lag at the bottom of the spending table, below that even of physical education. Spending per pupil on art and design books in English secondary schools stood at 32p, and just 27p in Wales.

Dame Vivien Duffield, chairwoman of the Clore Duffield Foundation, said: "There seems to be a growing divide between schools which are well resourced, and schools which under-funded and lack even basic resources."

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