Posted Wednesday 1 June 2016
Meditation chairs for airport travellers, candle holders containing possessions of lost loved ones and building designs for a community in Portugal have been just some of the creative ideas being showcased by graduating students from Kingston University's Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture at this year's undergraduate degree show.
The show provides industry experts and talent scouts with the opportunity to preview the creativity flowing through the veins of the University's Knights Park campus. Visitors can expect to see cutting edge work by students completing degree courses in architecture, design, film-making, fine art, landscape architecture, graphic design, illustration and animation, interior design, photography and product and furniture design.
Exhibits include designs created by BA(Hons) Architecture student Morgan Patterson, whose work centres around creating a community complex for seven families in Portugal – consisting of houses, an amphitheatre, a dance studio and an architect's workshop. "We looked at the needs of the community as individuals as well as what they might require as a group and had to focus on off-setting the costs of each family's building with the construction of at least two other apartments," he explained. "The project has been incredibly complex and really honed my skills working with mixed mediums, using hand drawing and computer programs to develop the final designs."
Over in the darkrooms, photography student Marni Lovell decided to set the scene for her final project in her own living room, creating a series of portraits of women. "I've always been fascinated by the female body and chose to photograph a number of women for different reasons - it could be that I admired their beliefs, their creativity, their unique aesthetic or the luminosity of their skin," she explained.
Meanwhile in the University's workshops, 23-year-old product and furniture design student Sara Pagani had world weary travellers in mind with her design for a steel-framed meditation chair. "My 'Meditasi' chair is designed to enable people to practice meditation in airport waiting areas. I was keen to find a way to try to help passengers feel less stressed and tired, in a situation where they also had plenty of time on their hands," she said. "The wings on the chair help the user cut out noise around them and I drew inspiration for the seat from the Piaggio Vespa scooter."
Fellow BA(Hons) Product and Furniture Design student Pol Mauri Carbonell has turned his attention to combining memories with art, creating a series of porcelain candle holders burnished with fire that contain possessions of family members loved and lost. "I introduced the items into the wood fire to allow the ceramic to absorb the smoke – the objects burned with them became a part of the final piece," he explained. "As the project's name ‘Burnt Memories - Objects of Mourning' suggests, the candle holders embody the flickering flame of life, burning down with time."
Elsewhere, Sophia Ward's final illustration and animation degree project has centered around her research working with a memory café specialising in care for elderly people. "I created the ‘Memory Maker' to engage people experiencing memory loss, producing random shapes by laser cutting pieces of fibreboard, which people can then arrange on a bespoke table in ways that are meaningful to them," she said. "Because the pieces appear abstract, they can be interpreted in many ways by each individual. My goal was to develop work that made illustration and design helpful to peoples' lives."
Dean of the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture Professor Steven Spier said he revelled in watching students' talents develop during their time at the University. "Seeing the work of some of the best art and design students in the world go on display at our undergraduate degree show is an exhilarating and humbling experience every year," he said. "Their creativity and passion is an inspiration as they shape bright futures for themselves by thinking through making."