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Ways of Knowing: An exchange of ideas about movement, creativity and learning for children

  • Sat, 03 Feb 2018
  • 10.00 AM - 6.00 PM
  • Tickets: £30/£25


INHABIT dance artist Paula Hampson facilitates a day with invited guest speakers including fellow dancer Grace Surman, educators and artists to consider the physical capacities of children to learn and grow into creative thinking beings.

The day will include presentations by artists including Sarah Black and Catherine Starky, a workshop and discussion opportunities alongside performances by both Paula and Grace, who have created work with and about their children.

Paula Hampson's Wonder touches on the importance of play, curiosity and observation, reflecting on the shared enquiry of innocence and playfulness between herself and her young son. Grace Surman's performance Would You Rather Be Lost is in response to the act of becoming a parent. In this new piece, Grace wants to explore and catch the particular physicality of father and son at their given ages. 

We welcome parents/carers, teachers and artists to join us in sharing ideas. 

Book on to the Ways of Knowing event for the full package of presentations, discussions and both performances (10am - 6pm) or alternatively, book to see the stand alone performance of Wonder (2:30pm).



Paula Hampson

Paula has been working as a dance performer, maker and teacher for 28 years after training at the Laban Centre for Movement and Dance and has continued to develop her creative practice through exploring experiential approaches to movement through Improvisation. Paula has been a resident at the Bluecoat for 9 years with fellow artists Mary Prestidge, Andrea Buckley and Jo Blowers. Our working history spans 20 years as an artist-led organisation - Liverpool Improvisation Collective (LIC).

Ways of Knowing is a day event instigated by Dance Artist Paula Hampson as part of the Inhabit project, Bluecoat's 3 year programme of new dance funded by Esmee Fairbairn Foundation.

Paula's current performance and teaching inquiry has been focused on ways of engaging young people through creative movement and play. Employing multi-sensory and experiential approaches to support childrens learning and individual voice.

In 2017 Paula created a new solo work Wonder which was performed at the Bluecoat in July, this was programmed as part of the Abacus exhibition for children.

Ways of Knowing is a progression of this work and an opportunity to show Wonder in a different context, giving new opportunities to open up dialogue and exchange practice with others.

Sarah Black

Sarah Black is a lecturer at Liverpool Hope University, she is a dancer and installation artist. Her practice Mother as Curator is located in her family home and has been developed from her PhD studies and interest in the maternal.  She is concerned with developing solo performance and works with her children with a particular focus on the ethical implications of practice which operates in the home.  

The title of the presentation is ‘Our Practice’. Sarah will present a paper outlining her role as the mother-artist making performance/art with her children. This paper will demonstrate art making as an extension of mothering and a projection of care, which reflects her ideological and ethical practice as an artist.

Catherine Starkey

Catherine Starkey is an Early Years Consultant who specialises in emergent curricula and holistic education, specifically the Reggio Emilia approach. Catherine has worked as an educator and early years leader for 14 years in UK and abroad, and in the past 5 years has helped guide nurseries and preschools in Wirral and Liverpool in adopting emergent, child-originated styles of practice that support organic, creative learning.  

Catherine will be presenting a background of her work as an educator and facilitator using emergent styles of teaching, including the Reggio Emilia approach. She will be discussing her experiences as a consultant sharing emergent styles with early years professionals, and the achievements and challenges this has brought. In this she will be exploring some possibilities for maintaining wonder and curiosity in children’s education and in teaching, in an increasingly pressurised climate.

Grace Surman

Grace’s practice circulates around the realms of performance, live art, theatre and choreography. With over 20 years experience of making solo and collaborative work exploring live presence, installation and video art. Her work has been presented both nationally and internationally.

As part of Ways Of Knowing Grace will present and discuss her new work created in collaboration with Merrick Surman and Gary Winters Would You Rather Be Lost. In this piece Grace wants to catch the particular physicality of father and son at their given ages.


To find out more about Bluecoat’s programme of New Dance, please see our INHABIT Brochure.

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