Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Media Project: Interviews

As a media project, linked to the documentation of the Occupation, we stared to interview students from different courses that are being offered at Byam Shaw. This project is a means to introduce an understanding of each course from a student’s perspective and also to communicate more personally to equal individuals. Furthermore we asked for feedback on their opinions about the Occpation.

Jacob: Fine Art Foundation

The course offered at Byam Shaw, is very good! This last term we particularly concentrated in life drawing and a self conducted project. We are given a lot of support by the tutors, which always go this extra mile to give support. The course is structured very freely, yet lies in conducted boundaries of research. In response to the Occupation, I think it is very good to get students involved in university politics, because they are an integral part of the system. Without students there is no need for an university. Students should be obliged to be part of discussions.

Laure, Chike and Anna: Fine Art Foundation and Art and Architecture Foundation

In the beginning of this course, students are lead through given tasks to respond and develop through to the final stage of the year where they are asked to create a final major project. This project is self initiated and is used for the final exhibition in May. We are defiantly receiving a great support from our tutors. Additionally to your personal tutors, you can see any tutor in a drop in session, even if he/she is not you personal tutor. Tutors are themselves practicing artists, so they have a lot of experience and actually are the BEST resource to learn from! It is difficult to comment on the Occupation because we have been so involved with our work, we kind of don’t know what is going on. We would like to get more involved, and agree and support this movement, mentally, not actively. “We kind of feel that we are not part of it, because we are not on the BA course.”

My response was that there definitely should be an improvement of communication with the foundation years. A lot of interaction happens during Byam Bar, but this is not enough. We agreed to pick this issue up in future and work on integrating the foundation year more to the overall college, student feeling.

Patricia, Maria, Oliver and Jenna: Fine Art Skills and Practices (FdA) First year

In short: Print making, drawing, sculpture, work based program, communication, tutor are great active, present, and filled with information.The Occupation is no hostile action. It is a creative and positive intended movement. Alone that a collaborative exhibition was created within one weekend shows a lot of potential. Via Byam Shaw! We LOVE Byam Shaw!

Peter Kennard: Visiting Tutor at Byam Shaw

Peter Kennard was a student at Byam Shaw in the ears from 1965 till 1967. He has been teaching at Byam Shaw for thirty years and has a strong involvement with the college. It is an important, amazing place. The fact of organizing an occupation is a powerful statement. The students are organized and show functioning communication skills, which are brilliant. Seeing that from written documents, no responses were received, the occupation is a result of that. Byam Shaw has an amazing history of being an independent art school. The management of the University of Arts is taking over everything. This is a modern world reality- they have no understanding of what an art school, creativity, is about. Were hours are being cut, being called and the staff has no comment to make and is left with 25% cut off their teaching hours. They are treated like fodder, they are not important. And the students are thought of like that. And now. That students step back, and do act. It is a historic moment. Within the traditions of British culture, getting all students that can create; challenging the bureaucracy of the University of Arts- they have no clue of what art school is about.


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