Fiona Rourke

Fiona Rourke, University of Brighton Faculty of Arts

3D Materials Practice BA(Hons)

What work are you exhibiting in the Graduate Show 2012 - Up and Beyond?

Reflect, Refract, React.

Mirrors are culturally synonymous with self-awareness. They provide a unique virtual stage in which we play the part of the protagonist, the director and the critic. Reflect, Refract, React is a body of work articulated in metal that challenges this relationship by applying the mirror to the body rather than viewing the body in the mirror.

Taking lead from childhood toys such as kaleidoscopes, the work produced offers the opportunity to re-establish playful connections with mirrors through movement and performance. This body of work compliments a visual research project that deals with the more personal and socio-cultural baggage we bring to the mirror and how we choose to engage with our virtual selves.

My Background

I came from a Fine Art background and changed to 3D Materials Practice, now called Design and Craft, after doing the first year of a metalwork degree at a different university. I’d had a few years out of education in between.

I chose to move to the course at Brighton because it offered a lot of freedom for self directed work whilst still maintaining a very high level of skills in both practical and theoretical work. The ability to explore your own process of ideas generation and material interests is great for anyone who doesn’t feel committed to one set path or subject.

It has been an incredible experience. I have learnt so much in terms of practical and personal skills, made some great contacts and had plenty of fun too. It has been tough, the standards are very high which is so important for growth.

A lot of support comes from the tutors and technical staff, you can cross disciplines for advice which is really great. Also the student services department is really good and groups like Bee Purple, who give business and careers advice give the university a real edge against others.

What would you say to anyone considering this course?

I would say that if you are interested in exploring your own capabilities and want a structured and supported setting in which to do it, then this is a great course. It really teaches you the breadth of your own abilities and opens your eyes to how many different ways these skills can be used.

What has been your greatest challenge?

Fitting everything in whilst still maintaining the high standards I expect from myself. I have been working two jobs and doing projects outside of university too and it can be tough to get the balance right.

After graduation:

I’m looking at collaborative projects, residencies and internships for when I graduate. I also plan save up and go to the RCA for a masters degree at some point.

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