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Creative Arts Tour 2017

Artistic adventure - June / July 2017

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Thirty-eight Year 10 and 11 students of art and design headed off on an 18-day arts adventure this holiday break, accompanied by five Wenona teachers. The first destination, Copenhagen, showcases Danish architecture, art and design styles. Contemporary art continues in Paris at the Georges Pompidou Centre and working artists’ studios of Montmartre – alongside classical art and impressive Paris museums and landmarks. The final destination, New York, mixes iconic monuments with artists’ workshops and the incredible exhibits of the Guggenheim, Museum of Modern Art and the Hewitt Cooper and Brooklyn Museums. 


24-25 June – Denmark

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Sydney to Copenhagen via Abu Dhabi and Amsterdam: passing the time in airport terminals with a game of Uno! 


26 June – Denmark

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After settling rooms for 38 exhausted girls and five staff, our first day in Copenhagen began with a wonderful guided walking tour of the sights of the city, including the canals and spectacular architecture, giving us a sense of the history and an appreciation of the beautiful gardens and buildings.

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A ferry ride provided another perspective of the striking ‘Black Diamond’, the black-granite extension to the traditional Royal Library.

The angled, black-glass-and-granite exterior mirrors the sky and shimmers like a black diamond. 

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Another highlight of the day was Christiansborg Palace where the Danish flag indicated that ‘our’ Mary was at home! Ms Waud did write to let Mary know we were coming but the reply told us the Crown Princess ‘has a very busy schedule’! So we simply waved and tried to have our photos taken with the Palace guards instead.

We celebrated the end of our first day at a fun park: the Tivoli Gardens.



27 June – Denmark

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Our day began with the stunning Design Museum of Denmark, featuring an extraordinary collection of innovative furniture, fashion and industrial design, which showcased the simplicity of Danish style.

After lunch a bus tour beyond the city took us to Kronborg Castle, Helsingor - yes, the one where Hamlet is set. We found ourselves not only an audience but also participants in a performance of the play, enacted throughout the courtyards and rooms of the castle, finishing with the tragedy of the final scene.

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From Kronborg Castle we went on to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 40 km north of Copenhagen, where we engaged in a sketching workshop led by the gallery guides.

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This museum was a perfect place to enjoy the afternoon sun by the coastline – from where we could see Sweden in the distance – and walk through gardens scattered with Henri Moore and Joan Miro bronze sculptures.

The museum is also renowned for its collection of the distinctive sculptures of Alberto Giacometti.


29th June – Paris 

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Arrived in Paris where we’re staying in the Bastille area. Girls delighted by the breakfast buffet of patisseries, croissants, pancakes and fresh cold meats and cheeses each morning.

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 We began our tour of Paris with its most famous icon, the Eiffel Tower, followed by dinner nearby.

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30th June – Paris 

The next morning we enjoyed a walk through gardens — Jardin des Tuileries — a beautiful refuge in the middle of the busy city. 

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Walked to the Musèe de l’Orangerie to view Monet’s waterlily series ... Such a peaceful space: we sat in silence in large white, circular rooms and drank in the paintings. 

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Next stop was the much larger Musèe d’Orsay where we spent several hours wandering the many rooms of famous art works, especially savouring the vast collection of French Impressionist paintings.

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The afternoon was spent in the stunning solemnity of Notre Dame Cathedral before wandering to the Latin quarter for dinner.

Making the most of the long summer evenings, we finished the day with a cruise on the Seine. 

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And a quick celebration in honour of Sophia's birthday before bed!

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1st July – Paris

A guided morning tour of The Louvre brought a more informed appreciation of many of the world’s most famous masterpieces.

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We then took the Paris Metro to visit to Basilica Sacrè Coeur. Undeterred by rain, we took a guided walking tour of Montmartre with its iconic markets and portrait artists at their easels.

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After a quick stop at Ladurèe for macarons, we were met by the Louis Vuitton Foundation bus at the Arc de Triumph for a trip to the 16th arrondissement and the Bois de Boulogne to visit the extraordinary La Fondation Louis Vuitton, designed by Frank Gehry. We spent as much time marvelling at the astonishing architecture as the artworks within.

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2nd July – Paris

Our final day in Paris was another clear highlight, with a train ride beyond the city to visit the lavish Palace of Versailles.  We took a walk through the local markets first and gathered cheese, baguettes, fruit and patisseries for our picnic in the palace gardens.

A guided tour enabled us to avoid huge queues, and appreciate more of the history surrounding the construction of the palace and its enormous and spectacular formal, manicured gardens.

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3rd July – New York

We arrived in New York in the afternoon and headed straight to Angelo’s Pizza on Broadway where we had ‘all-you-can-eat’ pizza and salad. We then walked through Times Square taking in city lights and action. 


4th July – New York

We started the day with a visit to fantastic museums and galleries: Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Guggenheim, and the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. We strolled leisurely through Central Park, including around the Jackie Onassis Pond. Later we celebrated Independence Day with pizzas and games at Central Park where Dr Scott also joined us. 


5th July – New York 

Today we headed to the Empire State Building for the most amazing view of Manhattan. From there we went to the fabulous Museum of Modern Art. After spending some time on 5th Avenue for lunch, we visited the 9/11 Memorial and Museum which was a very moving experience. Later that night the girls enjoyed a night out in Times Square and Broadway where we saw the musical, Kinky Boots – spectacular!



6th July – New York 

In the first half of the day we took part in a service activity at the Holy Apostle Kitchen where the girls served lunch to the New York community. We then headed to Chelsea Markets for lunch and walked along the High Line (a 2.3 km-long, elevated linear park on a disused rail line) to the Whitney Museum. From there we walked through Greenwich Village and finally arrived at ‘The Park’ restaurant for the Wenona Alumnae Dinner. The food was fantastic and the view of the High Line was beautiful!


7th July – New York 

An incredible day starting with an illustration workshop – with help from New York illustrator, Jason Das. Some of the girls then visited Mood Fabrics where they bought some beautiful fabrics for their major works. Afterwards we visited Grand Central Station and spent some time in Union Square before joining Dr Scott in Bushwick, Brooklyn, for a guided tour of street art. To finish the day we went to Top of The Rock Observatory to experience the New York skyline in the evening.


8th July - New York

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Our first stop today was Battery Park, an historic park of 25 acres on the southern tip of Manhattan with views of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island – which we then visited by ferry. After a busy morning we went to Soho for lunch and then walked across the Brooklyn Bridge and spent a relaxing afternoon in Dumbo, Brooklyn. The last stop for the night was our farewell dinner at Stage Door Deli where we celebrated and reflected on a wonderful trip.


9th July -  New York

Today some of the girls visited the Frick Collection on 5th Ave opposite Central Park and others visited Union Square, 5th Avenue and Herald Square. We then walked through Central Park and headed back to the hostel where the bus was waiting to take us to the airport.