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ReFrieze Autumn 2010

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To celebrate the 140th birthday of the Royal Albert Hall, the Hall’s Learning & Participation team asked students from Special and Specialist schools nationally to reinterpret the iconic Victorian mosaic frieze, that runs around the top of the building’s exterior.  They were challenged to investigate and visually represent the changes that have taken place in the UK’s values and identity since the Hall was built.

By ‘stitching together’ over 600 artworks created by the students in response to bespoke project resources, photo digital artist Henry Reichhold has created ReFrieze: a 21st Century frieze as seen through the eyes of young people living in Britain today.
You can explore the Hall’s original frieze and learn more about the ReFrieze project, download the teaching resource packs,  view the student gallery and view ReFrieze: the final panorama of project artworks, by visiting

The ReFrieze exhibition will be on view in the Royal Albert Hall amphi corridor from Tuesday 22 February - Friday 18 March.

Open Days

Friday 25 February, 11am - 3pm
Sunday 27 February, 9am - 12 noon
Wednesday 2 March, 11am - 3pm
Sunday 6 March, 9am - 12 noon

In September 2010, teachers from Special and Specialist  Schools across the country attended a project training day at the Royal Albert Hall, where they received an introduction from Henry Reichhold about his work, creative practical sessions from artist Gail Astbury and comprehensive teaching resources co-written by Citizenship specialist teacher Alice Carlisle.

Over the subsequent months and during classroom sessions of Citizenship and Art & Design, the teachers explored with their students five themes: Your Story; A Snapshot of the UK in 2010; A Vision For Our Nation; The People, The Communities; and Our Legacy. The visual responses created by students to theme ideas and discussions were then uploaded to the ReFrieze project website which you can access below.

Henry Reichhold and Special School Principal, David McLean-Thorne, together with representatives from the Royal Albert Hall then selected works from each partnership to go into a brand new frieze.

Henry then digitally ‘stitched’ together the selected images to create the contemporary version; the ReFrieze.

This nationwide cross-curricular project culminated in a celebratory exhibition of the new frieze both on the project website; and in the ground floor corridor at the Royal Albert Hall in March 2011 to coincide with the Hall’s 140th birthday.

Downloadable Resources

ReFrieze Resources

We have produced a downloadable resource pack relating to the five themes of the ReFrieze project. The pack contains suggested Citizenship discussions and Art & Design activities and featured artists. National Curriculum links for each of these subjects are clearly identified within the packs.

The different sections are as follows:

Your Story

Your Story explores personal identity and issues affecting teenagers in 2010. Students are given the opportunity to reflect on their own lives and create autobiographical art-pieces using mixed media, collage and drawing.

A snapshot of the UK in 2010

Students are asked to reflect on what changes have taken place in the UK since the original frieze was completed in 1871.  They are challenged to create a visual piece reflecting the identity of the Nation, using painting, mixed media and mosaic.

A Vision for Our Nation

A Vision for Our Nation asks the students to consider what the UK should strive for and what our aspirations should be collectively.  It centres on the values of the Nation and creates great opportunities for group-working, using collections, sculpture, graphic design and drawing.

The People, The Communities

The People, The Communities gives students the chance to consider and represent our diverse and changing population.  As well as looking at the National picture, students are asked to study their local communities and the individuals represented therein.  Introduces fashion design, textiles and photography.

Our Legacy

Our Legacy asks students to consider how we are impacting future generations with our actions and ideas.  Students are asked to consider the function of art and investigate ways of leaving a visual imprint for future generations.

Alternatively these are available as separate packs on the ReFrieze website.