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An artist is introduced - Huili Atelier

23 Sep 2022

Huili Nursery is incredibly lucky to have an Atelier in our environment. I believe it is one of very few (if not - perhaps - the only) one of its kind in a school like ours in China. Originally from the French word which means ‘Artist’s Workshop or Studio’, Ateliers are an integral part of the celebrated Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education, which is famous around the globe. Ateliers are vital in promoting creativity and knowledge and children’s interest in concepts and ideas. At Huili Nursery Hangzhou, every day is a new discovery with Ms Irina, an Italian art specialist working as an Atelierista in our nursery’s Atelier.

Here Artillerist Irina Pinelli describes for us the role of the Atelier at Huili Nursery.


Sophie Brookes

Head of Early Years and Lower Primary

Irina Pinelli



The Atelier, intended as a “laboratory of doing”, welcomes graphic, pictorial, and manipulative languages and those of the body related to movement, verbal and non-verbal communication. In addition, it includes iconic, logical, scientific, natural, ethical, and multimedia languages, building a holistic image of a child. This range of possibilities is concrete proof of the importance of imagination, creativity, expression and aesthetics in the educational processes of development and construction of knowledge.   


· The educational project ·





The Atelier has the privilege of building different experiences and maintaining cognitive and expressive processes in close relationships to connect various fields of knowledge. Even if we see the Atelier as a specialist place, it could not exist alone. Indeed, the Atelier is the place where concepts and ideas are made visible. However, it is a part of a school’s overall educational project where all perceptions are refined and investigated with mind and hands simultaneously. 

Huili Atelier is a space for relation, experimentation, error, growth, discovery and invention, a place of interconnection between children, spaces and thoughts of the school, an environment that promotes knowledge and creativity, suggests questions and arouses suggestions developing the child’s ability to express themselves through their artistic language.   




In the Atelier, our priority is the holistic development of every person’s intellectual, emotional, social, physical, artistic, creative and spiritual potentials. 

Through the language of art, we encourage students to address the important issues of their lives, express feelings and emotions and become more conscious of the reverence for life and responsibility for the environment and earth. It intends to nurture whole and elevated individuals through the medium of art, which includes more profound and more purposeful work and experiences with nature. 


· The Atelier as a community ·


IThe spirit of belonging that we cultivate in the Atelier is creating a group of children who inspire, respect, encourage and support each other without losing the personal and authentic voice of the single. 


Recent Huili Nursery Hangzhou Art Exhibition


In the safe Atelier environment, each student can experience and explore the world around him, think freely, ask questions, find hypotheses and look for answers. As a result, children can understand more about themselves and their relationships with others, overcome difficulties and challenges, and learn how to be resilient and succeed. All this process is supported by an innate attraction to beauty, by taking time to carefully observe the world and learn how to look with new eyes and find new perspectives.