Friday, May 13, 2005

Fire Alarms and Thesis

I have just spent a research day down at the Chelsea College of Art and Design. I have been reading Visual Poetry to Digital Art: Image-Sound-Text, Convergent Media and the development of New Media Languages. This is the PhD thesis of the new media artist Maria Mencia. I had hoped to read this document on-line or at the British Library. Unfortunately neither of these two options were available to me so I e-mailed Maria in Australia and she kindly arranged for her library to let me have a look at the original.

It was fun to read Maria's parallel view of poetry and computer-mediated art. We mention a number of the same artists and artworks in our work. However, we have quite distinct views on the academic context and the state of the art. It was also fun to get to see Maria's artwork up close. It is a shame that I did not get chance to meet up with her when she was working in the UK.

Tate Britain Having said that I would have preferred to have read the text in Luton or at home I quite enjoyed going down to the Smoke. CCAD is right beside the Tate Gallery. It was also fun to see, hear and smell the art work being made at the college. I love the lively serendipity of art schools. The canteen was a buzz with chatter and I felt like I had stumbled into a dance routine in 'Fame'. I feel like I have been re-energized by the experience.

Fire Drill at Chelsea School of ArtIt was also a bit of a crazy day at CCAD as the Fire Alarm kept going off every hour or so. This meant that I had to interrupt my read a-thon and stroll around in the sun (shame!). It also meant that I got to meet some of the undergrad students. During one longish break I even found myself mentoring a young student who was unsure of his direction in life. Gosh...I must be a grown up!


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