Monday, 22 February 2010


an example of smoking architecture in Great Yarmouth.
a recent session on MATC at NUCA titled learning from the past was something I set up for the current cohort of students. 3 past students were invited to talk about their experiences on the course and their current activity. They each had 15 mins which they filled and could have continued into the next day. Then followed an intense discussion around a set of questions I had gathered from the students over the past 3 weeks on moodle. They were generous and incredibly useful both in practical and theoretical issues at the micro detail and broad sweeps of advice – one of the most useful activities I have facilitated within my role as educator over the past 20 years. I recommend this to every course leader – don’t forget to pay the ex students – value their experience.
Some of the questions
I think what to do now for later, and advice on time allocation is going to be really valuable
How closely did you stick to your original proposal?
If it evolved, how and why did it?
Did you follow on from MSN4 seamlessly, or did you change tack completely if so why, and did it matter?
How early were you able to visualise the physical manifestation of end result of Master's?
I'd be curious about methods past students have used to present support work. I realise there are guidelines on the intranet, but it would be useful to know if they have presented in a professional portfolio/ used sketchbooks/ notebooks, journals or digital technology?
postcards/ business cards? useful or wasteful?
Did you associate your work with any other known artist, if so, how did that influence the outcome, and was it difficult to retain some originality.
what would you do differently?
when is a good time to rest! i.e. is a proper break beneficial at some stage before the final show?
was the experience enjoyable?!
Post college
how they sustain their work now without the support and structure of the MA to keep them going!
have our speakers kept in touch with fellow graduates, or, do they have creative networks that fill the void of the group crit?how important is it to keep momentum after the show?where and how have they made their most useful contacts? was some of this luck? or sheer hard work and 'networking'

Sunday, 21 February 2010


a new phenomena is taking place - iron filing learning – with students becoming customers – making choices and taking control and in theory responsibility for their learning this new thinking might sound like sound a little like a pick and mix menu but i think it feels more like the student is holding many magnets which represents the students individual thoughts - the lecturers manifest themselves as a bag of iron filings – the lecturer talks and when the student hears something that chimes with their thinking iron filings fly towards them or not – the success of this exercise as far as the student is concerned appears to be if the lecturer has bought the right bag of filings the lecturer meanwhile is either left with an empty bag or gets to take it all home - i'm running a seminar about extending textile practice on wed this week - i wonder if i'll have the right contents?

Friday, 19 February 2010


the PgCtl is over in that I have just posted an electronic version of my profile 3 and action research project to LCC. I also held the last PDP intervention that I developed into the BA. these were created as part of a result of my first action research – which in itself I saw as a failure as I had created a perfect strategic learning experience and went on to rethink PDP within the whole course. to see the work go to but of course this is just the beginning – the empowerment felt by learning has been very forceful and is something that I am going to continue to pursue. I am pleased with the title of my action research - Interrogating the value of constructive (un)alignment: towards a celebration of troublesome knowledge in a golden era of bureaucracy and fear and think it creates just the right balance between old school pessimism and new educational thinking but we shall see – will the assessment and marking process destroy any learning and confidence building that has taken place? the role of student is an interesting one to undertake if you spend the majority of your time as a tutor.

Monday, 15 February 2010


one day we will all be here

Friday, 12 February 2010


a full week of meetings and writing - we are migrating the BA Textile course at NUCA to a new framework - i may of mentioned this - and spent 2 days writing the PDP element of the projects that are to fit into the units which align with the year with becomes the course within the framework of the school undergraduate framework. it will all make sense and make teaching and learning a more rigerous experience with appropriate learning outcomes and assessment criteria. Meanwhile work on the Moulsham Street project continues – on wed i had a wonderful meeting with Peter Turrall a very generous individual who took me on a guided tour of the street – starting at Chelmsford Cathedral – i found him through the lively Moulsham street past pupils group
thursday saw the MA students dealing with the concepts of finishedness – a workshop which explores the makers relationship to the numerous elements that make up the ‘equation’ that individuals need within a piece of work.
another meeting of the Alde group in the evening was an interesting experience – with many individuals all trying to work out their roles – within the project and outside of it – the value of art and why they are meeting at Snape Maltings on a dark and very cold (-3) thursday evening and finally friday saw me in second life – getting the hang of it – another steep but positive learning curve.

Friday, 5 February 2010


second life - looking like what you think you should look like in a virtual world

oxford street 8.30
store cupboard at Perfitts
moving in and out of several realities is part of what I do as a freelance artist but this week has been fairly extensive – there is the teaching at NUCA both BA and MA sessions were instructive – i know that i am not in the mind of a student – but i am part of an exhibition at Dragon Hall in Norwich - we are the history of textiles – a wondrous space with many opportunities to hang work in interesting ways, working with Keith at the stone masons on the granite samples for next week’s Mousham Street team meeting was exciting – full of potential – when the designs from paper and screen become ‘real’ is always closer to the real thing – but then I had a training day at LCC titled Education in Virtual worlds found me working in/on Second Life – it just could be the future – it has many benefits over the current real world paradigm - you don’t have to leave home, room availability is not a problem, the students can be monitored and turned off and I can wear whatever I want (there may be rules around this but i have yet to find them).
Also some web sites that changed my life this week - and and