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The annual Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design and Architecture Graduate Degree Show opened in Dundee last Friday. Students from all over Britain come to DJCAD for further study as it is one of the finest art schools in the country. The AUTHOR team were lucky enough to attend an early preview of the show on Thursday night before the opening as we are a Silver Friend of the Show.
Every year the show exceeds and this year was no exception. From Fine Art to Product Design, Architecture to Jewellery & Metal Design, there was plenty of beautiful and thought-provoking work to see on display. Here is a round up of a few of our favourites:
Bronze and Ceramics
The work of Fine Art graduate, Laura McSorley, was a delight to experience. Her bronze figs are gorgeous as well as her ceramic pieces. One in particular was a fabulous tiered fountain with such a magical sound. Laura looked at the philosophy of Greek Philospher, Epicurus, who believed that, “pleasure is the first good.” Epicurus founded a garden near the city of Athens in 307/306 BCE, which was used by himself and his followers. It became a symbol of Epicurean philosophy. Epicurus believed that the garden was, “a place devoted to friendship, philosophical conversation and delight in simple pleasures of the senses.”
Laura states that her practice is, “born out of, and manifests through, gestural action and interactive sculpture. An awareness of the senses other than the visual is an important element, utilising sound, smell and touch as an apparatus of bodily felt knowledge. The outcome questions hierarchies of material and knowledge production, with the aim of building a framework that can examine how people and ideas can come together.”
We also loved the ceramic work of Fine Art graduate, Amos Newton, who interestingly used both paint and ceramics as his mediums. We are in love with his exquisite Raku pots. The ‘Raku’ firing process originates in Japan. It is traditionally used for making pots for tea ceremonies. The key characteristic of these pots is the random, crackled finish. Ceramics fired using the Raku method achieve a stunningly intense colouration and unique, random surface patterning. The quantity of oxygen reaching the pottery, along with smoke and carbon trails combine to create these eye-catching, tessellating, veiny effects. We love Raku fired pieces here at AUTHOR as can be seen with our Raku Hares and Raku Pots.
Amos states how he loves the “physicality of painting and ceramics.” He never knows how a piece he creates will turn out but that is the beauty of his pieces as they ignite his curiosity and exploration to find out the end result.
The work of Fine Art graduate, Dani Christine Scott, really stood out for us. Dani’s amazingly realistic monochromatic oil painting studies of real life are eye-catching. Dani explored what a self-portrait is which is usually a subjective representation of the Artist. However, Dani wanted to reproduce her self-image through those around her such as her family and friends, who have had a profound effect on her life and upbringing. “Each painting tells a connective story that unites us thus showing my self-portrait and how this influenced the person I am today.”
Greg Cahill, an Art & Philosophy graduate, has bold and powerful paintings exhibited at the show. His work is concerned, “only with the rawest sense and has no interest in the narrative or representative.” His paintings are heavily influenced by the work of Jean-François Lyotard’s concept of the figural. By exploring the fine line between the figurative and abstract and avoiding the creation of identity, the viewer can project their own emotions and opinions onto the figures.
We absolutely adored the creative work of Product Design graduate, Ryan Davren. Using recycled coffee grounds, Ryan has created a unique eyewear line entitled, “Flat White” that gives discarded by-products a second life, fully embracing circular design. We are all about sustainable design here at AUTHOR so Ryan’s work really spoke to us. We’re delighted for Ryan as he is the recipient of the 2019 Design Award for most exciting innovation at the show.
The work of Textile Design graduate, Amy Carter, is truly beautiful. Amy’s wall hangings and wearable silk designs focus on close ups of ink in water that resemble vast scenes like skies and space, creating and capturing that intangible sense of the ethereal. The colour palette of her work is soothing, promoting self-reflection and a feeling of contemplation. Amy states she took inspiration from the concept of microscopic imagery that mimics much larger views.
The Degree Show is on at Duncan of Jordanstone until the 26th May. We highly recommend you pop in if you are in our neck of the woods to see the amazing work on display by all the graduates in all departments.
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