A budding Preparatory School artist had his work showcased at a national exhibition.
Angus Holland, a Year 2 pupil at Rydal Penrhos, created a piece entitled ’Destiny’ for the Art for Autism Exhibition, which is run by The Welsh Autism Ball.
The week-long exhibition was held at the Senedd in Cardiff from Monday, April 9, and it is the first time the organisation has held such an event.
The seven-year-old has a condition called Autistic Spectrum Disorder, which affects his social, behavioural and communication skills, with Angus also fitting onto the spectrum as someone who has Asperger Syndrome.
Parents Dan and Rajeena Holland, said: “Gus knows that he is Asperger’s and refers to himself as ‘green-brained’ and that everyone else is ‘pink-brained’ (he came up with this analogy himself which is quite smart!). He also has friends who are ‘green-brained’ like him.
“Angus is a very quick worker when it comes to art as he works so intently and fast, so the pastels on canvas piece took him about three hours. He loves art and uses it as therapy and aspires to be a famous abstract painter. His favourite artists are Picasso and Salvador Dali.”
The parents also heaped significant praise on Prep School staff for the support they have received from his initial diagnosis to recognising and nurturing his incredible artistic gift.
“The support he has received from school has been nothing short of amazing. We would be lost if it wasn’t for the support of Rydal Penrhos,” they added.
“I truly believe if he was in any other school, he would not have been identified as Autistic as he is so extrovert and vocal, but her expertise helped us to discover what Gus needed.
“He has been seeing Mrs Lavina Lewis every day for about ten minutes and these sessions have built upon his social skills, numeracy, literacy and self-esteem. We honestly don’t know what we would have done without her support.
“Sister Peta Stevens assisted us greatly through some horrendous moments when Gus was hospitalised due to his behaviour and required urgent intervention methods, she was there all the way - phoning and assisting in any way. Gaynor Davis is an absolutely amazing teacher who just ‘gets’ Angus and he has thrived in her class.
“When Gus painted his self-portrait, he was noted by the school for his amazing self-portrait, by receiving Artist of The Week. From this Suzy Morris said the school would like to offer Angus a place in the Year 5 art class on a weekly basis (art therapy), in addition to his regular Year 2 art class. They believe his art ability is beyond his years and have supported him by building him his own easel, making him his own canvas and allowing him to flourish with Year 5.
“We were told that it's a Rydal Penrhos first, for a child from Year 2 to be placed with Year 5s for art – due to his amazing capabilities and potential. We are so proud of him.”
Angus promotes his work on his very own Instagram account, which you can follow @ArtyAngus.