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William Docherty – ‘Multiplicity’ Exhibition The Ultimate Creative Masterclass Marsden’s Artist In Residence Programme

Mix a professional creative artist with impressionable students eager to learn and the results can be quite transformative – the ultimate outcome of the Samuel Marsden Collegiate School Artist in Residence programme. Marsden School established the Artist in Residence Programme in 1999 and continues each year to build a legacy of strong associations with professional practicing artists and designers. This year’s Marsden Artist in Residence is artist and educator William Docherty. William began his 6- weeks at the school on 31 May, creating his own body of work and inspiring students along the way.

Samuel Marsden Collegiate School Artist in Residence 2021, William Docherty, inspires Marsden’s Year 11 students.

William has been an art educator for over 40 years and is a practicing artist, painter and sculptor. His work has featured in numerous exhibitions.

During his residency at Marsden, William is collaborating with art students to create works inspired by the land, sea and sky around them as well as the changing seasons. “I tend to see things from a captured moment - like a view through a window. The multiplicity of the environment is what I’m after. In order to do that I’m referencing the ideas of the cubists and how they give you more than one view at one time. That idea, combined with my design background, allows me to see how things can be structured, organised and put together in a particular way.” The programme also extends to Primary schools in the local community, whose students, each year, are invited to attend a workshop run by Marsden’s Artist in Residence.

William’s creative outcomes, along with works of some of the students he has mentored, will be on display and for sale at his Exhibition entitled Multiplicity, held at the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts, 1 Queen’s Wharf, Wellington, 24 June to 11 July 2021.

"It is always fabulous to have such high calibre artists engaging with our students in the Artist in Residence Programme. That has been extra special this year, with William’s extensive background in art, as well as teaching. The in depth conversations, skills and the excitement that our artists in residence bring to the classroom is invaluable" says Marsden Art teacher and teacher in charge of the school’s Artist in Residence Programme, Kaz Bartsch. "The girls are inspired and motivated to try new things and exhibit their work in public. They expand their thinking about Art in new directions and the possibilities of pursuing a Visual Arts based career become more of a possibility for them. It is always a very exciting time for all of us in the Art House."

William was born in Glasgow and studied at Leicester University. Following his graduation with a BAHons, he moved to Birmingham to study Post Graduate Education at the School of Art. He taught in Birmingham for a year then moved to New Zealand, to a teaching position with Palmerston North Boys' High School, initially as a solo arts teacher. This position led to Head of Visual Arts, responsible for all aspects of the Art curriculum at all year levels, growing the department, and overseeing a purpose built Art facility, known as the Visual Arts and Creative Industry Department.

William has held roles including Assistant Chief Moderator of School Certificate Art, and for many years was a moderator for Level 1 and Level 2, and marker for Level 3 and University Bursary Art-Design. His long-term involvement in external marking panels is a reflection of the esteem in which he is held by the art teaching fraternity in New Zealand.

Samuel Marsden Collegiate School has been inspiring girls for over 140 years. While honouring tradition it delivers a wide-ranging, modernised and future-focused curriculum. Marsden is NZ’s first Visible WellbeingTM school, leading the way in wellbeing education. Marsden School provides education for girls from Years 1-13 and has a co-ed Preschool. Marsden School’s purpose is to lay the foundation for lives of meaning, accomplishment and genuine happiness.


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