The process of installing the degree show was exhausting, as I’m sure it is for all final year students undertaking the same process. The nature of my practice means I can never really start to create the work until installation of the exhibition begins, and the degree show was no exception.
Having to create both pieces of work in five days was ambitious, however I knew it would be enough time to create the large scale drawing and the installation based work, as I had already created a large amount of the clay sculptures.
The work is installed and the private view is underway, the main section of the gallery space is difficult to walk through with so many visitors, a successful opening night! The exhibition is open for a week, drawing visits from school and many other places.
It was an odd experience when dismantling the exhibition, most of the work had already been removed from the gallery by time I arrived, builders were moving everything out of the building ready for construction that will be taking place inside the building over summer, although it’s no longer the “Fine Art” building, with other courses also being moved into the space. I took everything down within an hour, a fraction of the time it took to install everything, and I stood in the empty space one last time. I’ve been working and developing my artistic practice in that building for four years, so the whole exiting the studios and gallery spaces felt rather unceremonious. Although I was helpful and opened the door for the workers who were pushing crate after crate out of the building, while I waited for transport to move all of my work.
Between then and now, I’ve applied for several opportunities, some are certain, some are less so certain. I hopefully will be making announcements on those soon. I’m sure all graduates feel the same way as me, that we can’t really have finished the degree so soon! While reality that I won’t be returning to that building next year hasn’t quite sunk in, I don’t want to waste any time in starting my career as an artist.