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All first-year pupils do art as part of the MADPID programme (music, art, design, PE, ICT and drama). These sessions allow experience to be gained of the four specialist areas of the department: painting and drawing, printmaking, sculpture, and pottery. This gives boys the necessary experience to make an informed choice of which discipline to pursue when making a decision to continue with the subject in their second year.

There are plenty of opportunities for first-year pupils to visit the studios in out-of-school time. The department is open at the weekends on Saturday and Sunday afternoons from 2.30 pm until 5.30 pm. There is a first-year art club on Tuesday afternoons for painting and drawing and the studios are open during games afternoons. There is an exhibition of first-year work as part of the annual Fourth of June exhibition.