Art student wows judges in public speaking competition
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23rd January 2019

The views of an art student from City of Wolverhampton College on an Andy Warhol portrait of Jackie Kennedy at her husband’s funeral impressed judges in a regional public speaking competition 

Natassia Nevill, aged 20, who is studying for a UAL Level 3 extended diploma in art and design, was awarded second place in the West Midlands heat of the Roche Court Educational Trust ARTiculation competition which encourages young people to look, think and speak about art. 

The student delivered a 10-minute presentation on her views of Warhol’s piece to an audience headed up by adjudicator Charlotte Higgins, chief culture writer for the Guardian newspaper, at the Barber Institute for Fine Arts in Birmingham on January 16. 

Natassia, who hopes to be a visual effects artist after completing her qualification, said: “I first saw Warhol’s black and white screen print of Jackie Kennedy during a visit to Wolverhampton Art Gallery organised by the college and was shocked at how he could profit from someone’s distress. 

“I did further research and discovered that he produced over 300 portraits from images taken from her husband’s assassination to his funeral and, as an artist myself, it really made me question the morality of his work.” 

Natassia, who was put forward for the ARTiculation competition after initially giving a presentation to her tutors and classmates and was up against five others in the regional round, added: “I felt very proud when I was selected to represent the college in the competition and couldn’t believe it when I was awarded second place as the other participants were excellent. It has been a huge boost to my confidence and will look good on my CV when I’m applying for jobs in the industry in the future.” 

In preparation for the competition, Natassia was mentored by staff from Wolverhampton Art Gallery alongside her course tutors at the college.    

ARTiculation is a national event designed to promote the appreciation and discussion of art, by challenging students to give a short presentation on a physical work of art, artefact or architecture of their choice. The initiative is designed to stimulate students’ interest and understanding of art, while developing individual thinking, observation, research, language and presentation skills.

City of Wolverhampton CollegeNatassia Nevill public speaking competition
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