Despacito Art School

Covid-19 update: Despacito is back, running a little differently! Since 8 July, sessions are taking take shape through doorstep delivery for our usual crowd in Cliftonville. Our activities are opened up to other young people and families from further afield via weekly sheets to do from home, downloadable from the website.

Started in 2017, the Despacito Art School is a hands-on place to learn about art, craft and functional object-making. Despacito is open to young people aged 5 to 12, who live in and around Cliftonville and Margate. They named the art school after their favourite 2017 summer hit. Despacito provides regular opportunities to showcase the work of the young artists to their families, the local community and the broader public; these include exhibitions in and around our building and participation in the summer Margate Carnival.

Despacito takes place every Wednesday 3-5pm. 

If you’re enjoying Despacito or want to take part, please fill out our short survey below:

Current Sessions

Read more: Doorstep Despacito

Every Wednesday from 8 July to 2 September 2020, 3-5pm

Doorstep Despacito

  • Despacito Art School

Past Sessions

In 2019 the Despacito Art School was featured on TV twice, in a short film that premiered on BBC Breakfast, and as part of a short documentary about Margate and the Turner Prize.

Read more: Art Explorers

Art Explorers

  • Despacito Art School
Read more: Voices of Margate

Voices of Margate

  • Despacito Art School
Read more: Margate is a Playground

Margate is a Playground

  • Despacito Art School

Past sessions / Heroes:
19 September to 28 November 2018

Wednesday 19 September 2018
Creating comics: Recalling and embellishing memories of summer to create our own short comics.

Wednesday 26 September 2018
Characteristics: Thinking about the characteristics of heroes and villains (brave and kind, wicked and cunning etc). How can we represent these traits through colour and form?

Wednesday 3 October 2018
Animation: Workshop with 1927.

Wednesday 10 October 2018
Designing our characters: Heroes and sidekicks, villains and henchmen. What will they look like? What powers will they have? Do they have a catchphrase? World Mental Health Day special session on feelings and exploring emotions.

Wednesday 24 October 2018 (half term double session)
Creating our costumes: Using our designs to create our own heroes and villains costumes ready for Halloween.

Saturday 27 October 2018
Despacito showcase: An exhibition showcasing the work of the Despacito Art School.

Wednesday 31 October 2018
Halloween trick or treat: Wearing our costumes and following a trick or treat map of Athelstan Road.

Wednesday 7 November 2018
Action figures: Using wire and plasticine to turn our heroes into action figures.

Wednesday 14 November 2018
Action figures 2: Using wire and plasticine to turn our villains into action figures.

Wednesday 21 November 2018
Creating a scene: Placing our action figures into a scene by creating 3D comics from cardboard.

Wednesday 28 November 2018
Creating a scene 2: Continuing to place our action figures into a scene by creating 3D comics from cardboard.

Past Sessions / Margate Carnival:
4 July to 5 August 2018

Wednesday 4, Wednesday 11 July & Wednesday 18 July 2018
Carnival School: Working on large collaborative sculptures, on props and costumes using materials including recycled items.

Monday 30 July to Thursday 2 August 2018, every day between 11am and 2pm
Carnival School: Last final boost before the big day!

Sunday 5 August 2018
Margate Carnival!

Past sessions / Creatures of Cliftonville:
9 May to 27 June 2018

Wednesday 9 May 2018
Slimy creatures: Learning how to make slime to create our own creatures.

Wednesday 16 May 2018
Designing and printing T-shirts / Tai Chi: Learning printing processes to make our own t’shirts. This session also explored Tai Chi techniques to think about movement and the motion of different species – something we continue to practise each session.

Wednesday 23 May 2018
Hackathon characters: Reusing and reassembling old toys to create our own imaginary characters.

Wednesday 30 May 2018
Kite Making: Designing and constructing our own kites to fly, looking at the birds of Cliftonville to give us ideas: from seagulls, sanderlings and pigeons to parakeets.

Wednesday 6 June 2018
Instrument Making: Making our own instruments out of this week’s recycled materials to think about how different objects can create unique sounds.

Wednesday 13 June 2018
The Art of Cooking: Weigh, chop, mix and taste, thinking about cooking as a creative and sensory process, and inventing our own recipes.

Wednesday 20 June 2018
Shadow puppets and painting with light: Using digital and manual processes (e.g. card cut-outs and cameras) to think about shape and light.

Wednesday 27 June 2018
Clay animals: Modelling, building and decorating our own clay animals.

Past sessions: January to April 2018

This round of Despacito echoed the project ‘Emperor Qin’s Mausoleum‘ led by Marguerite Humeau, which ran in parallel and explored the afterlife, antiquity and space. The programme for Despacito was put together Heather Tait.

Wednesday 31 January
Who is awesome? Who do we celebrate?: Create large 3d Portraits.

Wednesday 7 February
Mummies: Explore ‘wrapping’ methods using string, wool and other fabrics.

Wednesday 14 February
Build and decorate a space rocket inspired by the LIDO Tower.

Wednesday 21 February
Clay modelling: Create our own terracotta army that will journey with us to the new planet.

Wednesday 28 February
Build a wall: Brick making from plaster of Paris and foraged items e.g. seaweed, shells, etc.

Wednesday 7 March
Chalk carving: Inspired by hieroglyphics we will create our own symbolic language and carve it into the chalk.

Wednesday 14 March
Metalwork: Embossing and wired metalwork.

Wednesday 21 March
Jewellery making: Bracelets, badges and pendants using sea glass and other found items.

Wednesday 28 March
Make a time capsule: What should we leave behind?

Wednesday 4 April
Candle making.

Wednesday 11 April
Costume making part 1.

Wednesday 18 April
Costume making part 2.

Past sessions: Autumn 2017

Wednesday 4 October
Printing from drain covers: In this session we painted onto drain covers using printing ink and made prints from them. We also experimented with rubbings and made prints of road signs and other text based street furniture.

Wednesday 11 October
T-shirt printing from drain covers: Making printed t-shirts using the techniques learned last week.

Wednesday 18 and 25 October (half term)
Giant sweetshop: In this session we created enlarged versions of our favourite sweets, as individual projects to be put together to create a sweetshop exhibition.

Wednesday 1 November
Cynotype printing using found objects: In this session we learned how to print simple cyanotypes using found objects.

Wednesday 8 November
Cyanotype printing with self portraits: In this session we made cyanotype self portraits by taking photographic portraits and turning them into negatives using vegetable oil.

Wednesday 15 November
Leather making workshop: In this session we made handmade, drawstring purses from pre-cut patterns.

Wednesday 22 November
Monoprinted self portraits: In this session we experimented with monoprinting mark making, followed by self portraits. Photographs were taken of each child and used to make monoprints.

Wednesday 29 November
Musical instrument making from recycled materials: In this session we made rainsticks from cardboard tubes and dowling.

Wednesday 6 December
Pettmans: In this session an image of the Pettmans building was cut into equal parts and given to each child to recreate; colour in/ add things to, using drawing materials. The images were reassembled into a whole and displayed.

Wednesday 13 December
Christmas workshop: In this session we made Christmas themed decorations.