An exciting an impressive collection of work from BA Stage 2 students was on show at Millbank in mid May.
‘Adhocism’, the concluding project from the Stage 2 Textile Design Programme, was a demonstration of energy, enthusiasm and curiosity that characterizes the best kind of work from designers today. For several weeks, students were encouraged to explore their personal interests within a broad framework of ideas that connects contemporary world concerns – economic, social and environmental, connected by their interpretation of the concept of ‘Adhocism’.
The students declared an appetite for thinking in ambitious, radical ways when members of the TED research group held a ‘brainstorm workshop’ early in the project. Students articulated their developing ideas and confirmed the diverse and dynamic directions they were taking the TEN strategies, which represent new areas of creative concern for the textile designers of the future. The exciting thing is that there is still a further year of study for the students to confirm and develop a personal position in relation to their wide definition of the subject.
A competition for design solutions was set by the TED team, demonstrating: ambition; skill; aesthetic judgment and personal interpretation of sustainability. Any selection of the work best capturing these qualities proved very difficult, as radical new ideas were demonstrated in all disciplines and inspiring design challenges were identified at all stages of the lifecycle.
Finally, a selection was made of 4 ‘commended’ students: Yee Nan Fong, James Frost, Zoe Hartington and Brian Lamb, while the top prize was unanimously awarded to Hannah Louise Robinson. The prizes, presented by Prof. Rebecca Earley, included a paid ‘internship’, enabling the winning student to work as part of the TED group – on live, ongoing, project material, prior to final year BA study.
James Frost: for the way in which he considered the subject of trainers as a vehicle for systemic change in the fashion industry. Their meaning in social, economic and environmental terms was well researched and presented. The entrepreneurial spirit James demonstrated in setting up a website to effect positive social change was highly commended.
Yee Man Fung: for her connection between her textile practice and her ethical concerns about killing animals for food. Yee’s use of humour and inventiveness in setting out a knitted banquet with a correspondingly challenging menu was thought provoking and skillful in equal measure. The collection was commended for offering an aesthetic yet activist approach to her firmly held beliefs.
Brian Lamb: whose work featured the production of a professionally presented development of modular structures in a dynamic video format. The design of a diagrammatic range of furniture proposed products for distributed manufacture, DIY consumer involvement and a possible context for woven textiles. Brian’s use of the software promotes a convincing, next generation of product communication for designers.
Zoe Hartington: for her creation of a huge vision by applying her skills to the urban environment. Zoe transformed the urban landscape into a canvas for the application of beautiful, projected images. Her large format photographs captured Thames river views as virtual renditions of Venetian paintings. The presentation of such ambitious and compelling images demonstrated the transformative qualities of design thinking to problems of urban degeneration.
Winner – Hannah Louise Robinson: for her original and impressive interpretation of the pressing environmental and economic problems caused by waste material. Her thorough and detailed research was evidence of a complete commitment to exhaustive investigation of the issues. Hannah’s application of an intelligent series of design decisions regarding re-crafting techniques, new industrial connections in production and application to a final ‘product’ was impressive – particularly as the product was the changed nature of the fabric itself. It achieved new value for the material and pointed towards transformative future product development.
Congratulations to all students and staff for the impressive demonstration of ambitious ideas, deep thinking, humour and skill.
The TED team
27th May 2016