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Architecture and Fashion students gain valuable work experience at Nottingham Contemporary

The group of placement students created an alternative brochure for the current exhibitions at the renowned art gallery

The students with Ana Souto and and Carolina Rito at Nottingham Contemporary
The students with Ana Souto and Carolina Rito at Nottingham Contemporary

Six students from across our Architecture, Interior Architecture and Design, and Fashion Design courses have recently completed a placement at Nottingham Contemporary. The two-week placement period coincided with the installation of the gallery’s current two exhibitions - Pia Camil: Split Wall and Trix & Robert Haussmann: The Log-O-Rithmic Slide Rule: A Retrospective.

Eszter Fazekas, Oluwasayo Taiwo Olowo-Ake, Robyn Hutton, Szu-Yin Wang, Wadhha Z A A Alquwaie and Yasmin Rocha undertook the placement, led by Ana Souto, Senior Lecturer in the School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment at NTU, and Carolina Rito, Head of Public Programmes and Research at Nottingham Contemporary.

During their time at the gallery, the students gained valuable behind the scenes insights into the workings of a gallery. This included shadowing the curators, artists and technicians during the install of the exhibitions, as well as taking part in and delivering workshops and research. Particular highlights included the chance for the students to meet Sam Thorne, Director of Nottingham Contemporary, as well as Pia Camil, one of the exhibiting artists.

The students learned about the performativity of the exhibition spaces, and particularly considered how such spaces are required to accommodate different purposes and functions. The ultimate aim was to create an alternative brochure for the exhibitions, highlighting connections between the shows, to be offered to members of the public upon visiting the exhibitions.

Ana Souto and Sayo Olowo-Ake delivering a Walkthrough at Nottingham Contemporary
Ana Souto and Sayo Olowo-Ake delivering a Walkthrough at Nottingham Contemporary

Architecture student Eszter Fazekas told us: “The opportunity to take part in a project at Nottingham Contemporary was a memorable and insightful experience. From talking to artists and curators, to working together to bring about a useful item that highlights the similarities between the Hausmann’s and Pia Camil’s work, I’ve learnt so much about the process behind curation and the amount of work that goes into exhibitions. Meeting wonderful people on this placement has really made this journey a joyful and exciting one.”

Fellow student Yasmin Rocha commented: “I really appreciate that the placement gave some insights into what working at a gallery is like. Getting to meet the staff and the curators, and hearing what they had to say about the exhibition was such an inspiration as someone that loves art and architecture! Two things were of great value for me: firstly making contact with people already building a career, and seeing how much they are passionate about it, and that their hard work is satisfying for them and others. Secondly it was the team work; I didn’t know the other students beforehand, but regardless we supported each other and everyone got to be heard throughout the project. I learned that sharing thoughts and knowledge can take you further in a path for self-discovery.”

Architecture student Sayo Olowo-Ake added: “It was a real eye opener. I learnt more about the process involved with exhibition design, and enjoyed meeting the curators, technicians and everybody involved with the installation.”

Ana Souto told us: “The students who committed to this short summer placement made up a multidisciplinary team whereby skills, knowledge and interests were shared and exchanged. They researched and visited art spaces in Nottingham in order to understand how the audience experienced these spaces.”

She added: “They demonstrated a passion for the subject, analytical skills and abstraction of knowledge leading to a very successful leaflet which was used to support the Walkthrough of the exhibitions earlier in August. The placement represents fruitful work experience in the field of art and architecture, demonstrating the interdisciplinarity of this profession in Nottingham.”

Find out more about the students’ project here.

Architecture and Fashion students gain valuable work experience at Nottingham Contemporary

Published on 24 August 2018
  • Subject area: Architecture and civil engineering
  • Category: Culture; School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment; School of Art & Design

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