Tag Archives: exhibition

SLF 2010

I attended the Scottish Learning Festival 2010 a few weeks ago to see the Lochgilphead ‘Living Without Prejudice’ book and video on display. There was an amazing range of artwork on display from lots of schools in the Argyll & Bute Council area and the work was very inspirational.

While there, I also had the chance to check out the new Art Bus that will soon be touring around schools showing off it’s new collection of amalgamated sculpture, wall art and writing. It really was an interesting space to spend time in, much better than previous years.

Details and contact info on the project ‘Impossible Nation’ travelling Art Bus project, can be found here: http://www.travellinggallery.com/

David Shrugley

As part of the Visual Arts Festival, David Shrigley has ‘done a Banksy’ in Kelvingrove Museum (Glasgow). He has adapted a small part of the museum with his own sculpture and drawings. I usually really enjoy Shrigley’s work, it’s fast, clever, a bit stupid and often amazingly clever, though I found it hard to enjoy the Kelvingrove show.

After receiving an invite to the show opening, I was really excited about how Shrigley was going to get by the Banksy similarity and also how he would display his work within the museum, he didn’t and he displayed it badly.

My favourite work on display was the taxidermy Jack Russell holding a sign, though I can’t say that it displayed a huge amount of skill on Shrigley’s part. Thinking about the show later, I realised that Shrigley’s work is about being lazy, it’s a ‘off the top of my head’ doodle or a childish joke, Shrigley doesn’t do ‘effort’, he doesn’t do ‘skill’. I guess thinking this way makes his show a success and definitely ‘Shrigley-esque’, though I can’t bring myself to saying that it actually worked.

Shrigley’s work is on show in Kelvingrove Museum, Glasgow now. I don’t how long it’s there for, but I’m sure it’s too long…

Continuing Education Exhibition

I was given the chance tonight to get a visit to the Con. Ed. Exhibition at the Glasgow School of Art. The invitations were only open to friends and family of the artists, but the place was absolutely chockablocked. It was a real shame that myself and Mrs Lyons (Notredame) couldn’t get a chance to see all the work, it was virtually impossible to get to certain areas to view it. Fortunately we saw what we went to see, which was the new work of Claire – Louise C.

Claire’s work has really progressed since I last saw her around 3-4 years ago. She has developed a layering style involving photography, acetate and illustration. The three pieces she had on display were part of a storyboard based in a tube train. The images were very urban, illustrative and reminded me of something from i-D. Claire’s style has developed into a professional and commercial approach, which aids to her storytelling.

Claire plans in developing these panels into a single page or several pages linear paneled strip. I do think they would look amazing as single full pages in a book though. I can’t wait to see which direction she takes them in.

Design For Life 4 Real

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Most pupils don’t know to which extent they are learning to become a successful artist or designer in Art & Design. To pupils, the subject is still a hobby, something that you enjoy doing. I try my best to push the fact that they will learn skills that can take them progress in a career that they will enjoying doing everyday. Although the curriculum doesn’t allow an overall view of Art & Design as work, it does give an insight into how it’s made, especially the design content.

Pupils will know that when working with a design, especially at a high level (intermediate, higher etc), you must provide three examples of design. This also helps when gauging what a client wants. With any piece of design that I do, it is important to give the client a range of ideas to help them decide what they want. Most lazy designers don’t consider the client and only do what is necessary, leaving the client feeling trapped to one idea and not saying anything about issues they may have with the design. It is then fairly unlikely that that client will ever contact you again for further designs. It is therefore important to consider who you are designing for and getting a brief of what they would like.

The working example I am going to show you is for an exhibition held in my home country of Northern Ireland. The exhibition is for ‘The Recessionists’, a collection of painters and artists who have got together to provide affordable artwork during this harsh time. Now it’s fairly tough to design for non-creative clients, it’s ten times as stressful when you are designing for artists or other designers.

After speaking with the client on the phone you have a vague idea and notes of what they want. I suggest you sit down and sketch out a few examples. It is fine to leave them as sketches, though I find it helps the client choose, if you’ve prepared clean, digital examples for them.

I thought of my three ideas (actually four, but I disregarded the worst one). The first idea came to me as soon as I saw some of the landscapes that would be shown in the exhibition. The mountains look like a graph, a sliding graph of lost shares or money. So I came up with the idea below.

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The second idea came from the fact that the paintings would be affordable and on sale. This made me think of the competition between the big supermarkets and how they advertise their products. My next idea would be based on Tesco’s advertising.

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The last idea (and the idea chosen by the clients) would be based around someone who hadn’t much money looking into the fact that they’d like to go along to the exhibition. It would be a scattering of coins and information that would tell the onlooker about the exhibition as well as give them an insight into its aim and audience.

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The three ideas are then emailed to the client, who is allowed time to choose and fine tune any details they’d like to change. As stated before ‘The Recessionists’ have gone for the last idea and it will now be finalised and the final draft, emailed to them.

The three ideas and the final idea will have taken around 5 hours to complete. This is very slow in terms of commercial design work, most companies are ruthless with their time and expect an output in a short time. This is why I work for myself and can remain happy with the project, putting as much time into it as I see fit. Should you choose the design path, you’ll have to make the decision to either work for a company in a fairly safe job, but work underneath a manager or walk the uncertain path of working free-lance (for yourself), not knowing when and where the next job may arise.

I hope you’ve enjoyed looking at an actual insight into how design works outside of school. The basic principles are there, the initial thoughts and plans, the three ideas and the development into a final idea. When you get to it being second nature, you don’t really need to show your workings anymore, especially if you’re not graded for them.

I will show you the final idea when it’s complete.

The Scottish Learning Festival

I attended the learning festival yesterday and having big expectations, I was a little let down. I previously visited 2 years ago and found the whole experience very rewarding. There were teaching resources available, free samples, interesting innovative unit work and very enthusiastic staff. This year was the complete opposite. It felt like there was too much focus on the technology rather than the learning. There were smart boards on every wall and endless amounts of limited and pointless software and hardware. Fake guitars that looked like something out of Rockband, foam balls that play music, quizzes and games controllers, even PSPs. The focus was on learning through games though a lot of the stands failed to address the main issues in teaching today; budget, staffing and the Curriculum for Excellence.

Even the councils had gone ‘gimmicky’ featuring Doctor Who stands and Guitar Hero. I couldn’t find an application or any information of vacancies or help for newly qualified teachers or students. I don’t expect to go to a festival and have to face the horrible realism of teaching, though I do expect support and information, something I was struggling to find.

On a brighter note, there were a few things that caught my eye, like Dell’s ‘Oscar’ below, a talking, hand-shaking and sweet brandishing robot.

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There were also incredible little animations being made by primary school children in the Glow Lounge. Having a word with a few of the pupils, I discovered they had been working on the short film for around 2-3 hours and had 64 seconds of footage, but it was definitely worth it. When I interrupted them, they were in the middle of shooting a horrible car accident.

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On the other side of the hall primary school children were working on batiks. They had just finished colouring them and had hung them up to dry when I snapped a quick shot of the textiles.

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Holocaust Sculpture Open To The Public

Available until the end of March, ‘Hatred Destroys All’ – a scuplture by 2A from Gleniffer High School, is on show in Paisley Museum & Art Gallerys. It’s there as part of the ‘Testimony’ exhibition. Entered into the Holocaust competition, the piece did not win, but it is getting some attention from museum goers who are playing with and re-arranging the stones.

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