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Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design

Halloween window display by Louise Beck

Tilt Wig Collection by Yuki Saito

Smartborad by Giles Wilson-Coop

The Vast Book of World Knowledge by Vic Reeves

LondonMet MA Show 2009

[missing FMS file] 1966 - the dog thinks its all over, it is now...? by Spencer Rowell

Uncertain States, a photo exhibition part of the London Photomonth Festival

Photomonth 2009, a photography festival in East London


News and Events Archive: November 2009

Cass Alumna Spooks the Textile World

Louise Beck, a 2009 graduate of the BA (Hons) Textile Design course at The Cass (The Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design) has designed special Halloween window display for Selvedge, the celebrated international fine textiles magazine. Louise came to Selvedge’s eye when she won the first Selvedge Award for Excellence. Her fabric collection was selected from work by hundreds of graduates on display at the New Designers Exhibition.

Louise’s designs are ideal for the job, her winning interior fabric collection is called, "In the Dark Places”, and uses the notion of a girl exploring an unknown fantasy world, to create a series of dark, imaginative narrative prints with melancholic undertones that fuse Pattern Design and Illustration. She has had some help from another Cass alumna, Becky Gooby, an MA Textile Design graduate (and part-time Upholstery student), who has upholstered a chair for the display using Louise’s Fabrics.

Talking about her collection, Louise said,“ It’s a fabric collection created in a world where things are not always as they seem. The title has a two fold meaning: referring both to the physical dark places created by shadows and the darker side of the imagination: and the things that lurk within both!”

October 29, 2009

Cass Alumna Goes Full Tilt

Baroque wigs created by Yuki Saito, an alumna of the BA Jewellery and Slversmithing course at the Cass (The Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design) are featured in a new exhibition called ‘Tilt’. The ‘pop up’ exhibition, which is supported by the ICA (Institute of Contemporary Arts) will run over the next twelve months in Shoreditch, showcasing the work of cutting edge artists in all genres.

Yuki’s wigs have been used in theatre productions, operas, window displays, on the catwalk and for corporate events. Her work has been showcased as part of a special Christmas window display for Selfridges London, at London Fashion Week and on a spectacular catwalk during this year’s Hampton Court Flower show. Unique Arts Gallery on Kings Road has recently offered to display a collection of her wigs on a permanent basis.

Her studio is based at Cockpit Arts in Holborn. She is passionate about the baroque French period for its drama and theatricality. Her creations use a variety of construction processes such as felt making and jewellery techniques, and are inspired by her mother who was a hairdresser in Japan. Speaking of her work, Yuki said: 'By using unconventional materials my work communicates a set of moral values not based around riches and high society but rather quality and love.'

Recalling her time at the Cass, Yuki said: ‘The course gave me lots of freedom to design. It was also very informative about design history, which was really useful. I learned that designing is a deep thing to do. I would love to say 'Thank you' to all my teachers who taught me at the Cass jewellery workshops.’ Asked what advice she would give would-be designers, Yuki added: ‘Believe in yourself, follow your work and heart.’

October 28, 2009

Award-winning Giles is new furniture designer in residence

Giles Wilson-Copp is to be the new furniture designer in residence at The Cass (The Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design). Giles is a former student at the department, having completed an HND (now Foundation Degree) in Furniture Design. While he was still a student he won the 100% Design Award at New Designers, and the success continued in 2008 when he was crowned Homes and Gardens ‘Young Designer of the Year’ . As designer in residence he will continue to develop new projects, working alongside staff and students in the Cass’ famous workshops.

His innovative ‘Smartboard’, a space - saving sideboard which conceals a pull out a table with drop-down legs and four sturdy chairs, is in development for market with Studio Caparo. Forthcoming projects include the ‘Snapstack’, a revolutionary modular storage system, ‘a sort of ‘lego’ for grown-ups’ as Giles puts it and a mirror with a secret secure storage area for personal belongings. He is also developing a new chair which will use recycled materials, using a combination of traditional clay modelling and 3D Technology. He’s getting some help with the technology from artist Chris Cornish – in exchange for which Giles will design Cornish’s home. Giles is also branching out from the studio. An imminent project with Mowbray Crawshaw Artchitects will see him provide the interior design scheme for an exciting new block of eco-concept flats at a prime site in nearby Limehouse. And he has recently had several screen tests with a TV company to explore the possibility of a series about furniture making.

Talking about his residency, Giles said “As designer in residence I have the opportunity to continue my projects in the superb workshops at the Cass- they really are the best in London. I hope the students will benefit from some informal advice from someone who is closer to a peer than a teacher-and from seeing that there really is life after study in the design world.”

Michael Upton, Academic Leader at The Cass said, “It’s great to have Giles on board- I’m sure his enthusiasm for design and making will prove infectious. Our artists and designers in residence form a bridge between the student and professional world and are an important ingredient in The Cass’ ongoing success.”

October 25, 2009

Cass Alumnus’ Book of World ‘Knowledge’

Vic Reeves, one of the more famous Alumni of the Cass (The Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design) has released a new book of his idiosyncratic illustrations.

The Vast Book of World Knowledge is a hefty illustrated A-Z of dubious information and misleading advice about the universe, allowing the reader a chance to rummage inside the warped mind of its author. Subjects in the eclectic collection include everything from Ants, Asparagus Bogie Men and Barn Owls, through exploding jellyfish and revolving toupees to ZZ Top.

The encyclopedia began life as an idea for a children's book but soon evolved to coffee table status, requiring Reeves to produce 260 illustrations in three months - sometimes as many as ten a day. The finished result is somewhere between ‘art’ book and ‘humour’ book and will appeal equally to children and more grown up fans of Reeves’ skewed perspective.

Although perhaps better known for surreal comedy as part of Reeves and Mortimer, Vic Reeves is now dedicating much of his time to art and held his third successful solo exhibition Where Eagles Tremble earlier this year. Reeves (real name James Moir), studied a Foundation Year at The Cass in the early eighties and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by London Metropolitan University in December 2008.

October 20, 2009

Record Numbers attend Cass MA Show 2009

Over 700 guests attended the launch night of ‘Made in E1’, The Cass MA Show making it the biggest event of it’s kind the University has ever seen. Attendees to the show which took place between the 11-14 September were also up by 15% on last year.

‘Made in E1' showcased innovative postgraduate work by over a hundred students at London Met’s Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design. The show was included in the London Design Festival 2009 and selected for inclusion the Icon Design Trail, the essential guide to the highlights of the festival. A selection of work by MA design students was give an extended run at Unit 2 Gallery until the 2nd October to coincide with the festival.

The exhibition included final projects from MA courses in Textiles, Jewellery, Product Design, Interior Design, Furniture Design, Graphic Design and Product Design. Students from MA By Project courses exhibited research-driven project work in diverse design disciplines, whilst MA Conservation students presented their restored artefacts. The Unit 2 gallery hosted an exhibition students and films by MA Film Production and Digital Film and Animation students were also screened.

Highlights included MA Photography student Alex Klysinzki’s controversial doll-human images, Sophie Efthymiou’s border-crossing lanterns, Daniel Hildrup’s bio-inspired light and Saurabh Gupta’s innovative approach to indigenous art.

The University purchase prizes went to David George and Fiona Yaaron Field from MA Photography, whose work will be added to the institution’s collection. Aina Bergerud form MA Graphic Design won the Guy Beggs prize for her Typography project which used digital techniques to investigate the traditional craft. The prize was established by the artist Guy Beggs, the former Director of Metropolitan Works and is awarded to students who make innovatve use of Digital Technology in their final project.

Michael Upton, Academic Leader at The Cass said, ‘The MA Show has grown rapidly in scale and quality over the past two years, and is set to be bigger an better in 2010, thanks to the popularity of our postgraduate courses. The buzz at the opening night was incredible- a great mix of staff, students, their families and friends, as well as a god mix of VIP’s from industry and the press.”

Listen to MA student interviews on Lonondonmet YouTube channel:
Alex Klysinzki | Sophie Efthymiou | Daniel Hildrup | Saurabh Gupta

See MA student works:
David George | Fiona Yaron Field | Aina Bergerud

Video of Sophia Efthymiou's Project
Crossing Borders

October 8, 2009

Between The Lines Symposium

Symposium: Between The Lines
Date: 25 Nov 2009 - 10am-5pm. Lunch provided
Veneu: The Women's Library, Old Castle Street, E1 7NT

This symposium will look at artists who combine image and text in their work and also collaborative ventures by writers and photographers. It will explore the debate that concerns image/text use and its implications for the way we think about contemporary art.

Liz Jobey, associate editor of Granta magazine and editor of photographic publications including, The Maze by Donovan Wylie and The Victor Weeps by Fazal Sheikh.
Dr. Inge Daniels, visual anthropologist, Oxford University. Author of The Japanese House: Material Culture in the Modern Home, Berg Publishing.
Peter Smith, MA Photography Programme Leader, Thames Valley University. Author of Photography Language and the Pictorial Turn, Kunst and Politik, Jahrbuch der Guernica-Gesselschaft, Bild 10/2008.
Susan Andrews, MA Photography Course Leader, Sir John Cass School of Art, Media and Design, and photographer for The Japanese House: Material Culture in the Modern Home, Berg Publishing.
Mick Williamson, Head of Photography, Sir John Cass School of Art, Media and Design.
Fiona Yarron-Field, artist/photographer and author of Up Close - A Mother's
View, Bunker Hill publishing.

£40, Concessions £30.
Booking essential.

For more information contact Sue Andrews on 020 7320 1903 or s.andrews@londonmet.ac.uk


Cass MA Alumni in an 'Uncertain State'

Photo Exhibition: Uncertain States
Dates: 6 - 28 November 2009
Veneu: Photospace Gallery, 530 Commercial Road, London E1 0HY
Opening times: Tues-Sat, 11am-6pm.  Admission is Free

Seven contemporary photographers who studied or are studying on the MA Photography Course at The Cass (The Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design) are showing their work at an exhibition called 'Uncertain States' as part of London Photomonth form the 6th to 28th November.

Their work shares a common interest in exploring the physical and intellectual space between certainty and uncertainty. In this volatile global climate the show reflects some of our current concerns and challenges how perception is formed in our society on issues as diverse as politics, religion, and personal identity.

David George depicts man-altered landscapes created by the heavy industries of Britain, Jo-Seong Hee experiments with the technique of collage to produce an imaginary 'panorama' of high-rise buildings, Ulka Karandika captures a time when a fashioning of identity assumes a prominent place in our psyche with her images taken in a University 'Halls of Residence', Juyoung Park recreates contemporary biblical images to find the inner meaning of old stories, Spencer Rowell explores a series of memories of childhood referencing image and text from comics and storybooks in the 1960s, Alex Skliszynski shows work that concerns a number of human-dolls that aim to raise questions about the numerous objectified and idealized body images that we see in the mass media, Fiona Yarron-Field reveals a series of portraits taken the week before the last Israeli-Palestinian war broke out, she creates a space where the external signifiers of ethnicity are no longer important and individual men face one another, not as 'the other' but as fellow human beings.


Londonmet partners Photomonth

Staff, students and alumni of The Cass (The Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design) are contributing to a host of exhibitions, activities events as part of this year’s Photomonth. The event is the largest photography festival in the UK, with more than 150 exhibitions and events taking place in over 80 venues in East London.

From Tuesday 27th October to Friday 6th November the Foyer Gallery at Central House will host a group exhibition by MA Photography students, from University College, Falmouth. The show reflects a broad, diverse response to photography, which has evolved from bringing together those from different backgrounds and experiences and challenging them to question contemporary codes and conventions of photographic practice.

Two Symposiums will take place at the Women’s Library. At COMMUNITIES AND ARCHIVES on Wednesday 18th November. Photographer Melanie Manchot and members of the University’s east end archive team will discuss building a photographic archive for the future – the selection, collection and digitisation of photographic material. BETWEEN THE LINES on Wednesday 25th November will look at artists who combine image and text in their work and also collaborative ventures by writers and photographers with speakers including Liz Jobey, associate editor of Granta magazine, Dr.Inge Daniels, visual anthropologist, Oxford University, Fiona Yaaron Field artist/photographer and author of Up Close – A Mother’s View and academic staff from The Cass and other institutions. Between the Lines will be accompanied by an exhibition at the Foyer Gallery from Tuesday 17th to Friday 27th November.

From Thursday 5th to Saturday 28th November UNCERTAIN STATES will be at Photo-Space gallery on Commercial Road. This exhibition brings together the work of six contemporary photographers from diverse backgrounds all exploring the physical and intellectual space between certainty and uncertainty. The photographers have one thing in common- they are alumni of the MA Photography course at The Cass.

Short Courses and workshops will be held at the Photography department at The Cass. Professional photographers, Spencer Rowell and David George, run classes at a reduced rate for Photomonth 2009. Subjects include king the most of your digital camera, studio lighting, black and white printing and print processes from Digital Files.

Michael Upton, Academic Leader at the department said, “It’s really important for staff and students that the Cass plays an active role in the capital’s creative calendar. Photography events don’t get much bigger than Photomonth. It joins London Jewellery Week, London Design Festival and Alternative Fashion Week as a highlight of our year.”

For full details of Photomonth | Uncertain States

London Metropolitan University