As the final term of the academic year comes to a close, third year art students all around the country take their stand to display their creations to the all-important viewers and observers of their work. The degree show is a nerve-racking experience for the art student who for the past three years has been working towards that epitomising moment. To some the judgement of the institution is secondary to the judgement of the public. Everyone who attends the show has an opinion, every judgement – however amateur, is important to the student’s future, if received well, then whatever blow the institution gives can be less impacting. A public’s backing is what everyone wants, while the institutional backing helps to ground the successful career. Robert Auberon visited the University of Brighton Degree show and here’s his verdict:
The Brighton degree show includes a number of different courses all exhibiting at the same time. Subject areas include painting, illustration, fashion, architecture and graphic design.
Generally speaking the varied nature of the work on show makes it interesting to look around but also means that the quality pieces can be overlooked amongst the rabbit warren of spaces to explore. By the time you reach the final areas a little bit of art fatigue sets in even amongst the most avid viewer. Wondering around I found myself looking for original ideas, even if at this early stage in most art careers nothing is really refined you can still get a sense when a piece of work has thought behind it. Disappointingly, the painting section was the most unimpressive.
However I found that the quality of the space where the work was exhibited had a bearing on its final success. For example the photography room was a good space. Partially being the first part of the show you feel at your most receptive. The gallery overlooks Grand Parade and draws your attention to what’s going on outside. I found the contrast between the gallery space and the very busy street outside to be a positive one.
With lots of spaces to discover, some intelligent ideas, some fascinating, a few obscure, one or two exceptional. (Not a showstopper). Overall a good effort.