Students from BA (Hons) Fine Art, Critical and Curatorial Practices are collaborating with local artist Lee McDonald to present ‘The Future of Plymouth’ – a new body of work exploring themes based on the transition between the past and future for Plymouth as a cultural centre.
The students – Jess Bent, Maddy Crossley, William Danby, Kath Howard, Sarah Hughes, Helanie Moore, and Tiffany Smith – are exhibiting in the foyer of the city centre Council House as part of an initiative to promote the vast range of creativity in Plymouth.
The exhibition’s main sculptural piece, ‘eight’ (2014), is a fully functioning, kaleidoscopic view-finding device that allows the viewer to consider the city’s historical nature, but also abstracts what they are viewing.
"We wanted to do something that included some audience participation to bring a bit more energy to the room," student Helanie Moore said.
"It can be quite a daunting place to go. We wanted to make it a little bit more relaxed.
"We wanted to see the space in a different way, which is where the kaleidoscope idea came from. We wanted to try and make it a bit more playful."
The kaleidoscopic effect aims to act as a metaphor for Plymouth’s multi-faceted historical and contemporary magnitude, emphasising the importance of the city’s legacy in developing its future.
The students worked with local kinetic artist Lee McDonald on the piece. "He’s really nice to work with," Helanie said.
"He’s so laid back and really humble. He was a real team player and wanted everyone to get recognition for the work."
"It’s quite an unusual space for art," she said of the Council House. "You can’t really drill anything to the walls because of the listed features. "
"We couldn’t have anything that was loud or noisy or too many electrics. It was quite a challenge – but it’s worked really well and the council are really pleased with it."
The exhibition is open from Tuesday 29th April - Friday 20th June 2014 – open to the public every Friday from 1:30pm - 4pm.