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Seeing the world through an artist’s lens

Artist and visual arts teacher Olivia Owen brings a truly global perspective to her role at ACG School Jakarta.

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Originally from Ireland, Olivia has spent 12 years living in South East Asia and has taught art and design in the UK, Singapore, Bali, Malaysia and Jakarta (across the American High School Diploma, International Baccalaureate and Cambridge curricula).

Passionate about the importance art plays in today’s society, Olivia’s creativity, expertise and international outlook are taking ACG School Jakarta’s visual arts programme to the next level.

“We use art to appreciate who we are, our place in the world and the meaning of our lives. It allows us to express ourselves, speak to others across time and place, and see the world in different ways,” says Olivia, who is also a talented painter, creating outstanding compositions inspired by film stills.

With BA and MA degrees in Art and Design (specialising in Fine Art) from the University of Portsmouth and a Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) from the University of Reading, Olivia is ideally placed to deliver innovative visual arts programmes that challenge and engage ACG School Jakarta’s aspiring artists.

“I work hard to provide students with an environment in which creative thinking is encouraged and developed, while ensuring they have fun in art through learning new skills and techniques. It’s our responsibility as art teachers to help students be imaginative and inventive.”

These qualities were certainly showcased by students at the school’s annual art exhibition which took place online from 7th to 11th December and featured a range of artwork from Kindergarten level right up to Year 11, as well as pieces from design and technology students in Years 7 to 11.

“The exhibition was designed to be a celebration, allowing students to look and respond to their own work and the work of others. It was a great opportunity for them to show off their work to parents, teachers and friends, and connect with each other.”

Compiled by Head of Department and design technology teacher Mark Ellison, with the assistance of Olivia and Tia Kusmugiarti (ACG’s lower school art teacher), the virtual exhibition was showcased on the school’s YouTube channel and website and was warmly received by students and families.

Says Mark, “Last semester’s exhibition with the inclusion of the virtual experience was a huge success. Students were given a platform that allowed them to share a vast array of artworks on offer, not only demonstrating their creativity but allowing for expression on a variety of levels.

“The exhibition was an excellent example of how we can use technology to help us adapt to everchanging situations while providing a safe and communicative environment for all to enjoy.”

With the school’s first-ever virtual exhibition proving to be such a big hit, the arts department has dynamic plans to explore the virtual platform further throughout 2021. A student collaboration event between the art, design technology and music departments in June looks set to be one of the standouts.

Adds Mark, “We have some exciting concepts involving interdisciplinary opportunities within departments across the school and look forward to seeing the possibilities and outcomes for what can be achieved using this platform.”

Be inspired by a collection of selected artworks from ACG School Jakarta’s first ever virtual exhibition or take a tour of the virtual gallery to view our complete 2020 art exhibition.