Winter 2010. Thousands of students take to the streets in London to protest a proposed increase in tuition fees. Furious, colourful placards ride the tide. Stop Education Cuts. Cut the banks not the students. F**k Fees. A girl with dark eyes and red hair, in a green duffle jacket, holds aloft a scruffy piece of cardboard. It’s scrawled in thick black marker. No Words Are Needed.
The undergraduate degree show is a pivotal event, marking closure to an intense period of making and learning, and hopeful graduation to professional art practice. It’s also when the outside world is invited into the art school, and students expose their work to a wider audience, often for the first time.
Rowan Lear spent five weeks in residence during this critical moment, at University of Gloucestershire’s Hardwick Campus, considering the performative mode of the degree show and the wider politics of art school education. No Words Are Needed enacts a playful critique, taking the form of an expanded, disseminated and performative publication, created in collaboration with knowing and unknowing students, staff and visitors.
Join Rowan Lear in conversation with book-artist and lecturer Andrew Morrison on Friday 5th June, 12pm, Hardwick Café.