Collective Drawing

In short

Students developed this idea for an imaginative dialogue with elderly people in care homes during the intensive week in Helsinki, 2021

By Kaia Phil, Marit Jongsma, Marja Rautakorpi and Yixue Chen Ma

During the PIMDI week in Helsinki my group talked a lot about having a workshop as equals with the participations in the eldery home.
We didn’t want to treat the elderly as people who would receive a present from us, but we wanted all of us to participate.
To learn from each other and to have this shared experience.

Our idea was to make a drawing together.
The first step was to make yourself present by tracing your hand.
The second step was to draw the hand or other body parts of your neighbour to make contact.
The third step was to give your neighbour or someone else a present by drawing something for that person.
The last step was to make connections between all of us participants.

Even though we had some challenges, only of the initiators was speaking Finnish in our group and it was more a physically challenge then we expected it to be, it was a really nice warm experience.

When I arrived back home in Amsterdam where I work meanly with children at primary schools I was really curious how this workshop would work for them. So I brought big sheets of paper, colors and tape and started the workshop with the young kids. First I ask the kids how we could make one big sheet together. After that we started drawing in the same order and steps as I had done with the eldery. These kids didn’t have any barrier physically and there was a lot of fun by drawing each others body parts by standing and lying down on the table with the paper sheets. We rotated a lot and drew different things on each others body parts. When we finished the workshop I asked the kids how they experienced the workshop. What did they like and what not?
Unanimous the answer was to create something together what made it fun. I thought that was great! During the workshop I wasn’t a teacher where the kids thought I would evaluate them. I was a participant having fun just as they did. I think this helped the kids to work more freely and to have fun without thinking about a result.

Photos by Marit Jongsma.