RGU art students tackle social issues at forthcoming Gray’s Degree Show: Neon Futures

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SOCIAL issues including feminism, gender equality and autism are set to take centre stage at the forthcoming Gray’s Degree Show 2023: Neon Futures.

Aberdeen-based painting student Lucy Gibbs with some of her work.
Aberdeen-based painting student Lucy Gibbs with some of her work.

With just a week to go, preparations are under way for the upcoming show with over 150 students are getting ready to unveil their work to the public.

This year’s Degree Show: Neon Futures, opens to the public on June 10 until June 17, and celebrates the bright, bold futures of graduating students across painting, contemporary art practice, fashion & textiles, communication design, three-dimensional design and photography.

Painting student Lucy Gibb, who lives in Aberdeen, is one of those exhibiting at the degree show. Her project focuses on ‘Women’s Work’ and the hard work and challenges undertaken by past generations of women. Lucy explores themes of expected gender roles and women’s frustration towards them and uses textiles and experiments with natural dye, using tea and coffee to explore colour and materials such as cement and wax.

She said: “I use textiles to explore the theme of Women’s Craft.

“In the same way that there is a beauty to the craft of female manual labourers. there is also a monotony. I aim to show the hard work and skill required within hand craft, much like that undertaken by past generations of women.

“I use my practice to explore my own identity as a woman. In art history, and certainly prior to the mid-20th century, women are often portrayed in a different light compared to the art we see today. Classical art features women as objects simply to be looked at by men.

“Throughout history we can see the change in how women are portrayed in art and through the rise of women starting to pursue art as a career. The 1960s brought the second wave of feminism which massively altered the art world and changed the way in which art was made. Women started to make art about real women and for women.

“I believe art can be used to highlight any number of challenges women have faced in society in the past and present. Some women artists use their practice to explore the theme of inequality in society and use their work as an outlet for the frustration brought on by this inequality. My own practice explores themes of expected gender roles, and women’s frustration towards them.”

Dean of Gray’s School of Art, Libby Curtis, added: “We are absolutely delighted to showcase amazing talent at Gray’s Degree Show.

“The theme of this year’s show ‘Neon Futures’, reflects our graduates ‘new’ and bold futures in the making. Our graduates work represents the intricate relationships between art, design, new technology, and our human condition. Super-charged with new ideas and buzzing with excitement, the projects on show at Gray’s upcoming degree show are testament to the foundation we offer students as they prepare for their careers as artists and designers.

“I would encourage everyone to come along to the show to see for themselves the amazing work on display and celebrate the creative spirit that will drive their new futures forward.”

Opening times are: Saturday and Sunday June 10-11, 10am-5pm; Monday-Friday, June 12-16, 10am-8pm; Saturday, June 17, 10am-5pm.

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Written by Sharecaster

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