In January 2020 second year BA (Hons) Fine Art students at Arts University Bournemouth began collaborations with three partner organisation as part of the unit Practice in Context. These organisations were the the Structural Genomics Consortium in Oxford, the Bournemouth Natural Science Society, and the Bournemouth council owned Lower Gardens mini golf course.
The participating student artists engaged with the three organisations and sites in various ways in order to develop exciting artworks in response to them. The artists found ways to adapt and advance their individual practices through the three off-campus engagements. The aim of these partnerships was to provide insight into how fine art practice can thrive and grow through collaborative initiatives with other organisations. They also aimed to provide a salient experience for the world of professional commissions and residencies that awaits these emerging artists in which they may also be asked to respond to a particular institutional, geographical or disciplinary context.
Through the Spring Term relationships between the artists and the partner organisations grew, responses were developed, and plans where made to show the fruits of this work to audiences.
Sadly, only a few weeks before the events where due to take place the COVID-19 pandemic began to have a significant impact on our (and of course everyone's) plans . Public exhibitions in Bournemouth and Oxford had to be cancelled for safety reasons and the projects unfortunately where left without the intended conclusions that the student artists had worked so hard towards realising.
The purpose of these pages, therefore, is to make up for (even a little) these cancelled events by bringing the results of the collaborations with the SGC, the BNSS and the Lower Gardens mini golf venue to an audience in the form of an online showcase. It is also an opportunity for participants to see their cohort's endeavours collected in one place, to share their insights with each other as well as with the partner organisations themselves.
I'd like to extend a massive thank you to SGC Oxford, BNSS and BPC Council, for working with us again this year, and for the generosity, enthusiasm and resources each has provided. The three opportunities have allowed our students to grow and develop their practice, and to make progress towards the world of professional creative practice with the knowledge, skills and experience gained through them. I'd also like to thank the visiting artists Rachel McRae and Doug Fishbone for leading and coordinating the BNSS and Mini Golf projects from our end. Most importantly, I'd like to congratulate the participating artists for the amazing hard work, dedication and team effort they have invested in the projects, and also of course commiserate them for the projects not being able to conclude as planned. But also to say that within this online showcase of their work, there is a wealth of insight to be found embodied in resolved and developmental work that does represent an amazing body of work and here finds an audience through being made public.
BA (Hons) Fine Art
Arts University Bournemouth