A big day out in London yesterday to see student shows – first up Chelsea – as ever the textiles was excellent – their knit was spectacular this year. The more conceptual work of Honami Nishii http://honami-nishii.blogspot.co.uk/ and Lucy Monica Poulden http://blog.tedresearch.net/explored the physical presence of textiles and was very thoughtful. In sculpture Borbala Szanto http://borbalaszanto.com/ is making work that seems to be about the presence of sculpture and also the lack of sculpture itself – but maybe before the sculpture happens - quite wonderful. The Royal College is always exceptional in every way, although the painting and print had an air of darkness and despair running through and over the work. In sculpture the seemingly slight work of Adriano Amaral http://whitecube.com/exhibitions/open_cube_masons_yard_2013/ was sublime the work’s presence made one aware of the materiality that surrounds us all. Emma Shercliff’s PhD http://vimeo.com/95431428 is looking at repetition and stitch in textile activity – the results should be interesting. The fantastic material investigation within the textile department was deep and meaningful as was textiles futures at CSM. Textiles strength was the weaving in general although the standout work was the work of Skye Gwillim http://skyegwillim.com/project3.html who had created 3D folded paper structures – clever and beautiful – what more do you want? Fashion is closer to costume at CSM although there was a fairly ‘wearable’ jacket whose construction made it seem as if it was out of focus – truly an object of desire. Seeing all the work of so many young people really does give hope to the future it’s always a great day where one feels energised and uplifted.