As the date approaches, it is always exciting to anticipate what the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee Unversity, graduating students will be showing. I enjoy wandering around the college I attended after I left school – it still smells the same, in a good reminiscent way – and it recalls the time I spent there all those years ago. One place I always visit is the painting studio corridor where as a new student, the painters James  Morrison, Dick Hunter, Bill Cadenhead and Mr Duff  amongst others tried to teach me to paint.

Painting corridor, DoJCAD

I always loved the way the light came through the windows, the black and white chequered floor and the plaster casts that lined the walls. In my memory there were more statues than there now are but I’m not sure.

Of course, I particularly look forward to seeing the Textile students’ work because over the years their degree work has been the ‘Star of the Show’ – in my opinion, well it would. Two years ago one of the graduating textile designers was the winner of the Textile Study Group’s Graduate of the Year, in fact the students placed second equal were also Dundee graduates, so the standard is always high. This year I had more than my usual interest, as earlier in the year I had met the graduating students who were using stitch in their work so I was eagerly looking forward to seeing their final collections. And the development over the months was wonderful. The print, some fantastic print, knit and use of new materials and techniques including e-textiles was inspirational. As these students will soon be heading off to New Designers I am not including any images but I’m sure we will see their names in the future and I wish them all the best for their careers. Thanks for being such lovely people during the days I met you.

What I am adding here are some details of a set of panels produced by the 2nd year textile students, the stars of the future, as part of a live commission for Verdant Works, Dundee’s award winning jute heritage museum. I had also had a day with these students two months ago and saw their wonderful sketchbooks produced after a study visit to Verdant Works. Each student was given a piece of natural Scottish linen to work on and then each piece was stitched together to create the panels. They look great, some lovely stitch and the finished panels work very well together. They offer a snapshot of different aspects of the jute industry, the machinery, the production processes and the people who worked in the many jute factories in Dundee, all realised in fabric and stitch.

Want to see more? Well, they will be on show in Verdant Works very soon and I will let everyone know when. Thank you to the textile students of DoJCAD, and the staff of the Textiles Department, Sara, Frances, Judy, Claire and Jane for allowing me to show these images – I did ask! #uoddegreeshow #dundeetextiles #verdantworks

An evening at the Degree Show

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