For Year 12 Visual Art student and Standen Bursary recipient, Lauren Vodden, the latest round of remote learning has meant transforming her kitchen and lounge room into a makeshift art studio.

“The lounge room floor is covered in pieces of cardboard, rolls of tape and bottles of glue,” she says. “It’s crazy and wonderful, though I really miss the art room and all the things that come with it, like the long afternoons with friends slaving away at our work—and of course the helpful tips and tricks from Helen, our teacher.”

Lauren is one of 11 BSSC Visual Art students who successfully applied for the 2020 Margaret Standen Bursary. The bursary honours much-admired art teacher, Margaret Standen, whose untimely death in 2017 was a tragic loss, not only for her family, but for the many staff and students who were inspired by her. Her husband, Peter, generously established the bursary in her honour, and all Year 12 students studying Studio Arts or Art General at BSSC are eligible to apply.

“I’m very grateful to be one of this year’s recipients,” Lauren says. “I would like to thank Peter Standen for supporting Bendigo Senior’s fabulous visual arts program in ­­­­Margaret’s memory.

“The art teachers at BSSC are always encouraging us to develop our skills, try new materials and techniques, and never put any limits on what we can achieve. The bursary has helped me to achieve that.”

Lauren has explored a range of materials this year including ceramics and cardboard. As a result of the Standen Bursary she’s also had the opportunity to explore resin, a material that’s not broadly available to students because of the cost. She hopes it will give her final artwork a point of difference.

“My final assessment piece is centered around the theme ‘transition’,” Lauren explains. “It doesn’t look like much at the minute, but it will become a cardboard sculpture of my grandparents clinking their teacups together as they reflect on the many transitions they went through both as individuals and a couple. I’m going to incorporate the resin by creating a splash coming out of the tea cups.”

We hope to share Lauren’s artwork, along with all our Studio Arts students’ final pieces, as the year progresses.