After three consecutive years of spending next to nothing on the end of year show, this year… the Cass is spending next to nothing on the end of year show. Surprise! Pegboard in trestle tables for everyone! It’s for the best really, since this work has all been created by students, it might come across as disingenuous if it looks like the polished work of longtime professionals.
It didn’t do us any harm last Time, or the time before. Or the time before that. Somehow, I have a sneaking suspicion it won’t do us any harm this time either.
I gave the second presentation focusing on just one approach, but in a more detailed way. Being a pragmatist at heart, I think the best thing to do would be make the most with already got. So that means pegboards and trestle tables.
Focusing on process is probably the best place because it means more opportunities for students to show good work. My sketchbooks are not really suitable for public consumption, but some students have sketchbooks that are very presentable.
I compiled my ideas into a PDF for the purposes of presentation. I basically broke down all the things I’ve already said and said them faster. Can you imagine? These presentations are intended to help decide how the summer show will actually be planned. Which is nice.
As stated previously, trying to simulate a Picasso, albeit only arbitrarily, is a tall order. I experimented with different colours and different compositions, and of course, forgot to make save states or take screenshots of those things. The thing with working digitally, is that it is very fluid. Every decision you make can be unmade. And not covered up, like old comic book artists had to do with white-out if they made a mistake. I mean undone. It’s as quick and simple and simply pushing a button, because that’s exactly what you do. I’ve never manage to train myself to capture all of these variations, successful and unsuccessful, as I do them.
The irony of this is that in the real-world, the people who give you your briefs will have no interest in how you get to the end result. However, watching the processes used to reach that end result is fascinating, both to those who wish to emulate, and those who simply want to know what the trick is. Like I said, ironic.
The third proposal is intended as the wild card option. The idea would be to do something what colour is the central premise. Brightly coloured walls with even brighter work or perhaps taking the Riso printer colours we have and what running all of the work through the same colour scheme. It would be colossal undertaking two themes the work by colour, especially if that entails editing work so that it conforms to that colour scheme. Is extremely unlikely we would get the permission is required to paint anything hot pink, for example, and the signage would be the anvil that breaks the camel’s back.
Presentation would be similar to previous summer exhibitions at the Cass. We would make use of natural wooden materials with the trestle tables and pegboards. This would be the cheapest option and the most in keeping with established traditions from previous years.
I like the idea of low key signage. Perhaps hand written type turned into a typeface? Or the typical sans serif Font you expect to see, but clearly spray-painted onto surfaces in a way where the imperfections are part of the charm?
The second theme is that of process. Celebrating all the work that usually isn’t seen in the professional world, and that is the fundamental essence of the course itself, sounds like a good idea. The presentation of the work would be the antithesis of the previous suggestion: we would show lots of stuff, it would be kind of messy and there would be an emphasis on sketchbook work and work in progress. We would effectively be walking the viewer through the stages we go through, starting out brainstorming/ researching, all the way to the final thing.
In such an environment, the selection of work would be extremely important and it would be difficult to show too much.
There also budgetary concerns when it comes to the presentation. White paint isn’t that expensive, but we need the permission to use it, walls to put it on, and people to actually paint the walls.
Would such a minimalist approach prevent us from using tables? Would we be unable to show sketchbooks? If the overall theme is minimalism, maybe we don’t need to go 100% minimalist. This is about showing a broad variety of work from a broad variety of students after all.