East & South Notts and Nottingham

Art made by Apprentices kicks off National Apprenticeship Week

Art made by Apprentices kicks off National Apprenticeship Week

If you visit the Creative Quarter, you’ll spot some rather wild and wonderful artworks that have sprung up around Nottingham’s Creative Quarter. Wander round the Lace Market, Capital FM Arena, Fletcher Gate, Marco Island and Hockley, and you’re sure to see some astonishing sights.


Ten new art pieces have been installed at various locations in the Creative Quarter and they’re all the handiwork of apprentices working across the city, aiming to showcase their creativity and talent.


The work has been made as part of the Made by Apprentices project developed by the Apprenticeship Hub at Nottingham City Council to kick off National Apprenticeship Week – running this week from 3 to 7 March.


The public art project involved 10 groups of apprentices from across the city working with artists to produce a piece of work that expresses something about their apprenticeships and themselves.


Councillor Nick McDonald, Portfolio Holder for Jobs and Growth, commented: “Apprenticeships are a key part of driving Nottingham’s economy forward and we want more young people to become apprentices, and more local businesses to think about taking them on. Our Apprenticeship Hub service has so far helped more than 590 young people into new careers, and because the focus given to apprenticeships in this city Nottingham is leading the way nationally at 23% above the average for take-up of Apprenticeships. We’re proud to support National Apprenticeship Week and we hope these eye-catching sculptures, all created by local apprentices, will send the message out that the creativity and talent of the city’s young people can be a massive asset to employers, and that they encourage those employers to think about taking on new apprentices, as the Council has recently done by doubling the number of council apprentices.”


Nearly 50 apprentices were involved in the Made by Apprentices project; all working under the artistic direction of professional mentors, including Simon Dunn from Siesmik, Sarah Parry from Little Wolf Parade and artist Feng-Ru Lee. The young people themselves are currently working in a variety of apprenticeships including digital, childcare, hairdressing, accounting, and business administration.


Seven training providers led the various projects, including the Confetti Media Group, whose apprentices teamed up with Rebecca Smith from Urban Projections to make a 3d sculpture of a QR code. Each pixel is represented by a length of wood and the design takes its inspiration from the Confetti group logo.


Head of Apprenticeships for the Confetti Media Group, Alison Whitlock said: “We have some amazing young people working with us and we’re really pleased to have got involved in this project. National Apprenticeship Week is a fantastic way of recognising the talented, innovative and dedicated young people involved in Apprenticeships and highlighting to employers the benefits of this type of employment.”


Other Made by Apprentices projects have been led by New College Nottingham BPP Training, Safety Problem solutions UK, Babington Business College, Enable UK, Nottingham Hairdressers Association, Access Training East Midlands, and Nottingham City Council. This project is part of an ongoing strategy to animate the public spaces in The Creative Quarter as well as supporting young people from the city into employment and showcasing their talent.