Art and Design is an essential part of all societies and cultures and here at Kensington we believe it is a vital part of the development of students, strengthening their ability to think, express, communicate and analyse in an increasingly visual world.

The Art and Design department is an innovative, forward thinking department which aims to harness our student’s creativity and motivation in becoming skilled artists and appreciators of art.


Key Stage 3

The Art and Design Curriculum is designed to teach a wide variety of practical skills within the context of historical and contemporary artists, movements and designers. All aspects of Art and Design are incorporated during the 3 year course, including drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpture and design, with each year of the course building up skills and understanding of the subject through exciting and relevant projects. In addition to technical skills, students learn how to improve visual literacy through research and analysis of their own and others artworks. We also endeavour to maximise on the cultural wealth of Barcelona, studying important Spanish and Catalan artists, designers and architects through educational trips to galleries and museums.

Key Stage 4

In line with the new 1-9 specification, students have the option of studying GCSE Art and Design (Fine Art). The course consists of two internally assessed and externally moderated components. Component 1: Personal Portfolio (internally set) and Component 2: Externally Set Assignment. Students will begin their GCSE coursework by developing their technical skills through thematic projects which allow for increasingly personal practice. This means that students are able to express themselves as individuals and focus on areas of interest, whilst gaining a broad and balanced range of skills. The students will explore the work of other artists, experiment with different techniques, and record their ideas effectively. The GCSE is a rigorous qualification that demonstrates the candidate’s ability to think independently, formulate and communicate coherent ideas, research and analyse, and evaluate and refine their practice. In April of F5, students will sit their art exam, which is 10 hours long. This will involve 2 full days working on their exam project final piece under supervised exam conditions in the art department.

Sixth Form

The 2 year A Level Fine Art course allows students opportunities to generate and develop ideas, research primary and contextual sources, record practical and written observations, experiment with media and processes, and refine ideas towards producing personal resolved outcome(s). In year 12, students begin skill based workshops, along with in-depth contextual artist analysis. Students pursue independent lines of investigation, and will be expected to visit art galleries and museums to inform the contextual element of the course. The skills based workshops continue until February of year 12 and students then begin their Component 1 Personal Investigation which lasts into year 13.

Year 13

Component 1 Personal Investigation - Students are required to conduct a practical investigation into an idea, issue, concept or theme, supported by written material. The investigation should be an in-depth study that demonstrates the student’s ability to produce a sustained investigation from a starting point to a final realisation. Component 2: The Externally Set Assignment is released on 1 February and contains a theme and suggested starting points. Following the preparatory time, students complete a 15–hours period of sustained focus under examination conditions to produce their final outcome(s), informed by their preparatory work.

Students should have a strong interest and enthusiasm for Art and be open to exploring a range of ideas and experiences. There is a written element to the course thus literacy skills are beneficial.