Gallery: Unit X Festival 2017

Images provided by staff from Manchester School of Art

Following a truly fantastic week of events, below is a gallery of images from this year’s Unit X Festival, along with photographs from activities and events that happened during the Unit.

 

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Unit X Festival 2017 – Punk Project

Words & Images: Aimee Plumbley

‘I didn’t know what to put here’ consisted of three exhibitions made up of contributions from students studying Curating; Textiles; 3D design; Fashion and Art Direction; Interactive Arts; Graphic design, and Fashion design.

Students investigated the wider theme of Punk, and interpreted ‘new Punk’ and considered whether Punk still has currency. The outcome of this resulted in a mixture of zines, photo exhibitions, graphic scrapbooks and exhibits. Themes such as feminism, inequality, politics and climate change were explored. The response to the theme was a physical manifestation of contemporary issues and anxieties of young people, as well as an opportunity to express rebellion and protest to them.

The quality of work produced was amazing, well done to everyone involved.

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Punk Workshop

Words: Aimee Plumbley

Images: Zoe Hitchen

Last week, level five students on the option three Punk project stream took part in a process led workshop held by graphic designer Malcolm Garrett, and stylist and art director Judy Blame. Malcolm and Judy are old school punks who studied in Manchester in the 1970s.

 

The students prepared research in advance of the workshop, which fed into a physical response to image and identity. The brief required students to ask questions such as ‘What inspires/ frustrates you?’ and ‘What do you feel a part of?’ to inspire their physical manifestations of punk.

Our students approached the brief from different perspectives, and the physical responses varied. Some of the ideas explored throughout the workshop included:

  • Punk and femininity acting as masks.
  • The commodification of punk and feminism. Especially conversation i.e. wearing the punk aesthetic, but not actually making any political statement.
  • Does punk still have currency? What is punk in 2017? In this world of hyper-reality, is making conversation with eye contact breaking the norm and rebelling? Could putting away our phones and in fact talking to one another be punk?

Malcolm explained the workshop was a unique opportunity for students to act unprofessionally in a professional setting, the punk aesthetic after all is supposed to be fun. The students were learning in a different style of learning as opposed to usual workshops at University.

“Punk encouraged personal expression and endorsed positive, personal intervention in society.”

We caught up with a second year Interactive Arts student who found the workshop “exciting”, and was inspired by the sense of community in collaborating with various creative students. She felt the workshop “allowed me to express how I’d like to present my work”, and was a welcome break from the academic model.

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