Without realising, somehow that time of the year had arrived. Students are graduating and setting up exhibitions of their best and final work.
I still remember my own degree show, well, it was only two years ago, so not really an achievement. Though, i don’t know if that is something to be happy about…
Friday was the opening night. That is when the whole shebang happens, but then it continues roughly for a week. Technically somewhat private, but not like anyone will check, so i got a chance to tag along to the opening night last Friday. I didn’t go to my old university though, instead i went to Manchester Metropolitan University, or MMU for short.
I went there just see the school and to buy sketchbooks form SU shop. Had no or very little expectations about the whole thing.
It blew my mind!
It was a whole new level of presentation and exhibition in general compared to what i had seen in my university so far. The whole thing was actually beyond comparison. The building itself where it was happening is new and modern, and spacious. The way everything was exhibited and presented was sleek, neat and professional. There was a subtle music playing through the speakers wherever you were. There was free wine/champagne/juices in glass ware and variety of nibbles for everyone. Everything was nicely put out and most of the stuff you were allowed to touch and interact with. Everything was produced to a very, very high standard.
I was amazed. Unfortunately i had limited time and i did not have a chance to see every course’ exhibits, but the ones i did were very impressive to say the least. The definite favourite of mine was this patterned furniture by Adrienne.
I don’t know the person but i fell in love with that pattern she had made. Inspired by (mostly – i assume) train station architecture, she drew bits and pieces and arranged them into a pattern that works perfectly as black and white as well as with a little dash of pastel tones.
Lately i’ve been obsessed with patterns and line drawings, which might be the reason why i love it so much, but that doesn’t change the fact that it works and looks really good on different upholstered furniture.
The architecture exhibition was also amazing. Some of the models were pieces of art on their own and i didn’t really care about the concept behind it.
Even fashion exhibition was good and i am not a big fan of crazy gowns that look ridiculous and are utterly impractical. But then i moved into the fabric/pattern/not-sure-on-the-right-term exhibition and… o…m…g… Incredible!
After such a positive experience i decided to pop into my old uni the following day to see the Degree Show there.
I knew it wouldn’t be the same for the reason that it would be already the second day, evening, actually, so all the hype that was (if was) there would be all gone. But i still wanted to go and see if anything had improved since i graduated.
Not really. Especially after seeing the show MMU put up, this seemed very sad. Obviously i’m not saying the work made by students was bad, by no means. The fact that saddens me is that the university doesn’t seem to be doing much to unlock the whole potential of the students.
Of course, there is no doubt that Manchester uni is a lot bigger and has more money and resources, but at the end of the day we, the students, pay the same fees and should be getting the same in return.
There will always be better schools and better opportunities, yes, not arguing that, but in my opinion the two schools i visited are not that far apart and different form each other as it seems when comparing the Degree Shows, if that makes sense. (my english probably wasn’t great there…)
Like i mentioned earlier – Degree Shows usually last for a week or so and i say it is worth to check them out. If you’re near a uni or have seen a poster saying ‘Degree Show -> that way‘ follow the sign and check it out. Very inspiring and good way to spend your time.