Thursday, 26 May 2011

All Over Now

Its over, I'm Free! after 5 long years I have finally finished my degree. I am officially a BA(Hons) in Embroidered Textiles and I feel.... nothing.
I am completely numb.I don't know what I expected -relief? elation? some sadness that it was over? (definitely not!). The week of the exhibition was exhausting, traumatic and extremely surreal.

Was it good experience?
I honestly don't know. I have staged or taken part in over 50 exhibitions in my time and I would say they were all a more enjoyable, fulfilling experience. We had a high number of visitors both to the Private View (although about 50 were probably the student crowd trawling the East London galleries for a night out with free wine - we had plenty so why not) and during the week , over 400 in 3 and half days so that was good -mind you we worked our butts off as a group to publcise the exhibition.

Do I think it was worth while?
Again I don't know. I have gained a reasonable degree. I have learnt things esp. about modern art but maybe I would have preferred to learn more about actual embroidery. I learnt a lot about professional practice and the thing I am most proud of was my dissertation. However I have also learnt to pick myself up after being knocked down more times than is good for you (perhaps that's a skill in itself), I have gained confidence and lost it again and I have learnt that an academic qualification can mean sacrificing technical skill on the alter of concept.

Perhaps when I look back in 6 months time I will have a clearer vision and can look back with some sense of pride but for now all I want to do is make things that I believe in and actually bring things through to a conclusion without having to change them to tick educational boxes and please tutors. And to sleep for a long, long, time.........


Heather said...

Sleep well Chrissie! Congratulations. Now you have your degree you can produce the work you want to, rather than what a module requires of you. In time your numbness will fade and you will be able to appreciate just how much you have achieved in the past five years. It's all the more admirable when you weren't simply a student but running a home and family at the same time.

Beverley said...

There's often a "flat" feeling after achieving things which matter to you. Hopefully soon this will be replaced by a self knowing glow of "you know what I did really well".
However your comments are very very refreshing, to tell it like it is - and I appreciate that, instead of some light fluffy gushings!!! Much more helpful to anyone thinking of such studies.

Gina said...

Congratulations Chris. I hope you come round to feeling it was all worth while (says she who is seriously questioning it all with still two years to go.) I know what you mean about ticking boxes though and I won't miss that! Your work looked fabulous.

Judy Martin said...

Congratulations Chris.

Your work looks absolutely fantastic.

I hope that you still keep up your blog because it is so refreshing to read what you say. You just say it like it is, and not many people are so brave.

I will be graduating next year and I too am looking forward to it all being over. I must say however, that I have really enjoyed the whole experience. It has stretched me so much - it has given me critical feedback which I really appreciate because of my self imposed isolation on an island in Canada - it's really good to be able to talk about art on such a high level with someone who is just as passionate about it as I am. So part of me will miss the degree study.

However, the rest of me just wants to do the work.

I really look forward to seeing what you do next with your textile art.

Congratulations again.