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Share Academy: Students and Museums Work Together

Written by
Colin Buttimer
Published date
22 May 2014

Garden-StoriesConvinced that museums and universities should be working together, our Head of Museum Judy Willcocks started running a project where they do just that.

Now, Central Saint Martins students are collaborating with a range of museums – from the South London Gallery to the Hall Place Gardens.

After a year of pilots, the ‘Share Academy’ project was awarded over £400,000 to run a series of collaborations over a two-year period. Five projects are now up-and-running, linking staff and students from the University of the Arts London and University College London with a several specialist museums.

Judy Willcocks said: “We’ve been working hard to identify partnerships that can offer a platform for public engagement and give students an opportunity to work on ‘real life’ projects, while introducing museums to new skills and specialisms. The deeper into the project we get, the more I am convinced that there is mutual benefit to partnerships between higher education and museums.”

Central Saint Martins projects:

  • BA Jewellery Design students will be producing work in response to the Foundling Museum’s collection. Some of the final pieces will be displayed in the museum, and the students will also deliver workshops to local school groups as a result of the project.
  • MA Narrative Environments students will research stories from the 65 hectares of gardens surrounding Hall Place, a 16th century house on the banks of the River Cray. They will then design and install an interactive exhibition that can help share these stories with future visitors.
  • MA Art and Science students will work with the Grant Museum of Zoology. They will be investigating how drawing can link personal meaning to abstract formulae, giving us a better appreciation of biological concepts.
  • MA Culture, Criticism and Curation students will help South London Gallery develop a model for representing ‘culture’ through digital curating and archiving. The project hopes to offer alternatives to Google’s seemingly encyclopaedic authority.

More information:
Share Academy
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