My year 6 class have been a good group to work with, They are the only KS2 group I teach at the moment and they have been roughly shadowing what the other Y6 groups have been doing,with a few extra twists. As part of the Niki De Saint Phalle project we were going to do a 3D piece. The other groups working with non-specialist staff have made papier-mache or brown gummed tape figures. I wanted to make something on a large scale, partly with the Thinking Practice group show at NUCA coming up. I wanted to do it as if I was a visiting artist in for a project to make something spectacular.

I had arm groups, leg groups, a body group, a head group and a horn group. We started building up the basic armature with card and rolled newspaper tubes. We built this up further with a layer or two of brown gummed tape. This works a lot better than traditional papier-mache as it is less prone to going totally soggy and it is a lot easier to clear up. The result is not quite so tough or as smooth as the real stuff but it works quite well.

When it came to putting together the parts that it became apparent that I had badly miscalculated the size of the thing and there was no way it was ever going to go in any car in the car park. The day was saved by Mrs Lewis who had got rather involved in the making of the thing. She told me her son is a builder and has a lorry that we could borrow. Mrs Lewis had got involved because one of her charges had become very interested in the plaster bandage that we put on to strengthen the sculpture. She and a small crack team had spent most lunchtimes working on building the sculpture up. In the end we took Henrietta as she was christened up to Norwich in the lorry and carried her up the stairs in an old football net.

Since the show she has been suspended inside the school along with some of the accompanying paintings, a sort of Phalle ‘skin’ and some of the smaller Phalle sculptures made by the other year six gropus.