Boys' School Prepare for Anzac Service

April 22, 2015 at 10:31 AM

Poppies, poppies and more poppies!

DSC00101.JPGIt was a game of numbers. Artist Paul Cummins envisioned making one ceramic poppy for every British soldier that died in World War One and then displaying them around the Tower of London. This led him and a large team of artists to make 888,246 poppies. The scale of this project was just amazing and truly represented what a huge cost World War One proved in lives lost. The Boys’ School decided to take on the task of making a small scale version of this.

Here, it also became a game of numbers to organise each boy to make a ceramic poppy in time for the dawn ceremony held at the School on 24 April. With each poppy representing 200 New Zealand lives lost during the war, Head of Art, Mr Tom Barter had to co-ordinate each boy to make, glaze and mount a poppy – a total of over 500 poppies through the kiln in five weeks! 

As the work got underway, Mr Barter said that both he and the boys became increasingly aware of the enormity of what each of the poppies represents. Every poppy that was made at school is unique – just like each soldier that went to war.

If we were to make 1000 poppies a year, it would take ten plus years to get to the number poppies made to represent each life lost. We have made a small dent in the number but it has been rewarding. Each boy will be presented with their poppy at the end of term in hope that we will continue to remember the cost of the war to our nation.

The poppies were formed from slabs of wet clay that were then cut and joined together to make the shape of the flower. These were then fired and dipped into a red glaze. Once fired for the second time, the poppies were mounted on green garden stakes and installed in patches around the School.

An Anzac Service will be held on the Top Field at the Boys’ School at 6.30am Friday 24 April for students and families of the Boys’ and Girls’ School and the Preschool.

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