Art students’ work revealed in Exeter city centre as lockdown eases

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From Monday 29 June – Thursday 16 July 2020, as the Exeter city centre opens up after lockdown, more than 30 students studying at Exeter School of Art will help to bring the city to life, as they show their most recent artwork to the public.  

Exeter School of Art may be the only college in the country where art students are exhibiting their work in real spaces as well as the virtual space. Traditionally this is the time of year for graduating art students to exhibit their work; however, this year the vast majority of art schools across the country are making exhibitions online. Here in Exeter, dedicated students and staff from Exeter School of Art are brightening up the city as it wakes up after lockdown, and shoppers and workers will enjoy a more creative environment as they return to the city centre.   

Emily Gibbon, Manager of retail, culture, tourism and business support organisation InExeter, said: “It’s so exciting to see the city coming back to life, people adapting to the new measures and bringing a buzz to the place once again. Having these fabulous pieces of art by the Exeter School of Art and Design installed for people to see and enjoy will add to the atmosphere and experience of visiting the city. It’s a great use of space, and I can’t wait to see more innovative ideas around the city in the coming months.” 

The outstanding artwork on display in Paris Street, Awesome Art Space, and 6 Paris Street and Peacocks and Halfords in Sidwell Street was produced by Graphic Communication, Fine Art, and Photography students studying at University Level, as well as students on the Access to Higher Education (Art and Design) course.  

The work exhibited is also from students’ final projects from years 12 and 13. The majority of the work was produced during the lockdown, which influenced what some students produced. Students did not have access to the college’s facilities and resources. They, therefore, had to adapt their ideas and be even more creative with the materials and technology available to them at home.  

Presenting the finished work to the Exeter community is an exciting opportunity, particularly for students who were disappointed by the prospect of graduating without presenting their work in a professional way to the public. 

Nigel Watts, Head of the Art and Design faculty at the Exeter School of Art, said, “We are very proud of the students who have worked so hard from home in the recent months to produce the excellent work you will see in the show. It feels great that we have had the opportunity to exhibit their work at the end of this academic year, something that did not seem possible a few months ago.” 

Exeter College and the School of Art are very grateful for support from Awesome Art Space, Eat the Bird and Princesshay, in providing and helping them to access these exhibition spaces.   

Michelle Menezes, Centre Manager at Princesshay, said, “We are delighted to host Exeter College and the School of Art on Paris Street for this exciting exhibition. The talented students have worked so hard, through very difficult times, to create stunning, thought-provoking pieces. All the artwork can be seen from outside the store. Everyone is welcome to visit the inspiring exhibition.” 

Exeter School of Art is part of Exeter College, and the work on display is from students studying on courses validated by the University of Plymouth and AIM awards. Exeter College was awarded TEF Gold (Teaching Excellence Framework in 2019). 

Exeter School of Art is now recruiting for all of their creative courses for September 2020.  

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