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School of Art MA degree shows unveiled

21 September 2012

Work by more than 70 students to go on show

THE haunting photography of Chris Extance will be among the work put on display in the Holden Gallery next week when Manchester School of Art MA students hold their degree show.

As well as studying photography at MMU, Chris is general manager of the music and arts venue Antwerp Mansion, in Rusholme. He chose to base his final project on the community at the venue, touching on themes of creativity, isolation and identity.

Chris said: “My work revolves around a long exposure technique allowing me to link people and objects through a surreal form of presentation. This parallels the strange and beautifully mysterious world of creativity I seem to call my everyday life.”

Hooray for Hollywood

Mary Stark studied for a BA in embroidery, but switched to photography when she chose her Masters subject. Even then she found that her work was taking a different direction – towards film, which she uses like thread to create woven installations.

In December, Mary won a commission from Cornerhouse to create a large scale installation which wove together the 1974 MGM film That’s Entertainment starring Bing Crosby and Liza Minelli with reels from The History of Cinema, shot on Super-8, which reminisced about the glory days of over-the-top cinema.

The finished work measured four metres by two metres, and incorporated projectors which shone light through the film to create images.

Mary said: “Film is like a piece of thread. Previously I had been creating textile artefacts – this one was more like a piece of sculpture.”

For her final MA exhibition, Mary took the installation apart and put the film back together at the Northern Film Archive, then wove it together with other films.

Installations and new sensations

Also on display will be work by more than 70 students, including Debbie Sharp’s installations, part of a commission from the Royal Northern College of Music and BLANKmedia which incorporates live performance, music, electronic audio, visual art, video and a critical forum.

The Saatchi Gallery’s New Sensations finalist Rafal Topolewski and shortlisted artist Bartosz Beda, who has just been awarded a six month scholarship to study at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste, in Dresden, will also be showing their work.

For further details see www.artdes.mmu.ac.uk/mashow