Benčić Youth Council held their eleventh workshop, Summer School “Art Colony“, and brought together 10 participants. With this workshop, we also celebrated our one-year anniversary of the Youth Council Benčić and carried out joint activities with children and parents.

The workshop’s title is Art Colony because we have planned several days of art activities in the outdoors, what is in the art world known as art colony. Our inspiration was the Beer Garden, held in the garden of the Maritime and History Museum of the Croatian Littoral despite the heat wave. During the workshop, we collaborated with Maritime and History Museum of the Croatian Littoral, the team behind the Beer Garden and artists Nika Rukavina and Petra Mrša.

The workshops for the first four days took place in the morning from 9 to 12 hours, and the last day in the afternoon 18 to 20 hours.

The first and second day activities we dedicated to the learning and working with clay and plaster. The children were making sculptures that will be given later in this year for the children choice awards for the best cultural event/worker/artist. The artist Nika Rukavina, a professional sculptor, thought us how to shape clay, dry it and make molds. Also, how shape it using different tools. After everyone sketched their ideas and shaped them in clay they made presentations to others about their work. Everyone had a look at all the sculptures and voted for the best in two categories – for best in culture and in the arts. Lorene Kalić and Nina Radović’s works were chosen. The second day we learned how from these sculptures we could make plaster molds and use them to for making multiple replication of the original. In addition, we have learned and how with the clay we can take prints of different surfaces, sculptures and reliefs in plaster. Everyone got to take his or hers sculpture home, as well as the cast of the relief / sculpture.

On the third and fourth day, we were working with linocut printing. Nika Rukavina, otherwise the name behind the brand Rijeka, showed us how she produces T-shirts and candles – and we tried it also. The theme was Rijeka, in any way, detail or a big picture, in any perspective. First we all drew sketches from which we had to make negatives with carbon paper. Then we copied the negative on the softer surface of the linoleum, also using carbon paper. Nika was constantly monitoring and advising us what to repair, add or change. After, we started with the gouging of the linoleum. That was a difficult and long task so we did it the next day also. When we all finished our linocuts, we printed them on paper and then on the  white T-shirts that we brought with us. We were all very pleased with the results.

The last day we planned family activities and we were joined by artist Peter Mrša. The first part of the workshop was dedicated to the family treasure hunt and getting to know the Maritime and History Museum of the Croatian Littoral. Tickets purchased for the museum were valid for a welcome drink in the Beer Garden. We sat down together and relaxed while Petra explained what she does and what we will do with her. She designed and implemented the project Exercising family ( and came to do a few exercises with us.

Parents and children have done the following exercises:

  1. Day wish. Every member makes a wish for a member sitting to his right that could be fulfilled on that day.
  2. Choir. One member teaches others to sing hers / his favorite song.
  3. Material. Everyone tells a tale about other members by completing the sentence: “If he/she were to be a material, he/she would be __________, because __________, and it would be good to use it for_______”.
  4. Understanding fear. A member chooses a fear he knows/assumes someone else has it in the family and talks about it as if it was his/hers fear.
  5. Silence. Look into each other’s eyes in silence for 10 minutes.

It is interesting to observe how parents and children relax. All the exercises were interesting; sometimes a little outside the box, but we still had an amazing time.

Number of participants: 10
Location: Beer Garden,in the garden of the Maritime and History Museum of the Croatian Littoral

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