Primary/Bristol: Compass Point Primary School & Early Years Centre

Conway and Young, Fox in the Toilet Mapping Workshop, 2015. Photo: Conway and Young.


Compass Point is part of Bristol City Council’s involvement is part of Bristol City Council’s Primary/Bristol series of artist commissions for primary schools commissioned as part of the Primary Capital Education Programme. As part of the development artists Conway and Young have been commissioned by the Arnolfini to develop a new artwork for this new school.


Conway and Young are developing a new work for Compass Point Primary School, taking the ideas of welcoming, getting lost and navigation as their starting points.

There are 23 languages spoken 
at Compass Point, and the process has been designed to acknowledge, investigate and celebrate this.

Through a series of workshops and visits, Conway and Young are working with the school to create new landmarks in the form of flags and playground markings.

The flags will be the centre piece of a new celebrant styled ritual for the school. At the beginning of the term after the end of the summer holidays, the Compass Point community will be invited to gather at the specially designed ‘flag assembly point’ where the new flags will be raised to signify the start of a new academic year. The raising of the flags will be accompanied by a performance from the school’s music and choir club, with an opportunity for others to participate.

A new song has been written in a workshop that was run with artist and musician Boff Whalley. This song will be reproduced in a handbook for use on the occasion of the flags being raised, and will include instructions for teachers to use in a class session to create simple annual costumes for the ceremony.

This annual ritual will last for five years. The use of the flags, song and performance aims to create a visible and shared identity, demonstrating the school and Children's Centre's pride in its diversity.

This project has been made possible through funding from Bristol City Council as part of the Primary Capital Education Programme.

Conway and Young

Jen Conway and Jessy Young (born UK, 1983 and 1984) have lectured in Higher Education and produced projects for galleries and public settings across the UK, for the last ten years. Key past projects include: Untitled, Think/Play/Do, The Tetley Gallery, Leeds, 2015; Designing A New Reality, The Promise, Arnolfini, Bristol, 2014; The Luddite Klub Card, Black Dogs, Bradford, 2014; Free For All, Lionel Dobie Projects, Manchester, 2013; One Hundred: Was, Is, Will, Hyde Park Picture House and Leeds City Council, Leeds, 2013; Colliding at the Corner, Situation Leeds and The Culture Company, Leeds, 2011.


Arnolfini is one of Europe’s leading independent, contemporary arts organizations, and is the flagship art centre for the South West of England with 450,000 visitors annually. 2011 is the year of Arnolfini’s 50th anniversary. Since its foundation in 1961, Arnolfini has built an international reputation for commissioning and presenting innovative, experimental work in the visual arts, always with a strong emphasis upon audience engagement. Many thousands of artists and performers have been involved with Arnolfini during this time, often gaining their first opportunity before going on to long-term success, and this wealth of creativity has been appreciated and enjoyed by consistently large audiences. Much of this groundbreaking work would not have been made or shown in Bristol and the South West region without the Arnolfini. Previous major solo exhibitions at Arnolfini have included: Marcel Broodthaers, Bridget Riley, Richard Long and Liam Gillick, as well as more recently Cosima von Bonin in 2011.

Compass Point Primary School & Early Years Centre

Compass Point, located in South Bristol, was opened in February of 1895, with over 300 children admitted to infants. By May, that number had grown to over 530.

Today the primary school has approximately 290 children in the main school, and also contains a nursery class and children's centre, providing child care and education for children between the ages of 0 and 11.

The school is linked with schools in Europe, Uganda and China, and is a member of the local community and the South West Bristol Co-operative Learning trust, along with three other local schools.


  • Commissioner

    Bristol City Council

  • Produced by


  • Partners

    Primary Capital Programme (BCC, Skanska, LEP)

  • Supported by

    Bristol City Council