I am Stephanie Mouillaud. After a career break (I used to be an accountant), I decided to re-train and work in the Arts and Education. I thought, what a better way to get active again than volunteering in a great gallery such as the Manchester Art Gallery!
I have been doing this for nearly 2 years now, complemented with other volunteering placements with the Trafford Hospital and Stockport Hospital – mostly providing creative workshops for the users and helping them on their path to recovery – and the Manchester Museum.
The Arts always held a place in my heart so it has been a very enjoyable experience being part of the gallery’s community. I get to spend quality time browsing great art at a top art gallery, working alongside brilliant artists Michiko Fuji and Jessica Wild and having a lovely time with the young artists in-the-making that come to the Mini art club that Michiko set up.
We get to introduce the children and their carers to the current exhibitions and/or the fantastic Clore Art Studio – set up by Sarah Marsh and Jessica Wild – with all its interactive objects and features before going down to the studio where the cutest artists can experiment with textures and creative materials all in a safe and stimulating environment, to the amazed gaze of their carers.
Personally, I love how such workshops can engage the public and families to come together and learn together about art while enjoying themselves having a nice time as a family, doing activities that appeal to the imagination, creativity and which make art more accessible and familiar to them.
For me, it is rewarding to collaborate with artist Michiko as I find her work delighting, very varied and inspiring. She uses space, material as well as the elements and senses to engage her very young audience, all this while being also very conscious of the environment and how to best use resources. I am myself aspiring to run my own art classes for an audience of people of various ability, age and background. Volunteering paired with my current part time studies in the Arts is a great opportunity to achieve just that I hope! You can follow my developments on my blog: https://stephaniemouillaud.wordpress.com/
Stephanie Mouillaud, Family learning volunteer.
If you’re interested in becoming a volunteer visit our website and fill in the form. We’ll get into touch when the next opportunity comes up.