Latest News

Drunken Painter Decapitates Mannequin Lover at Champagne Party

Salvador Dalí holding an artist’s lay figure (the chauffeur in the Taxi pluvieux), International Exhibition of Surrealism, Paris, 1938

A photo of Salvador Dalí by Denise Bellon. © Les Films de l’Équinoxe – Fonds Photographique Denise Bellon and Salvador Dalí, Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí, DACS, 2014.

The dark tale of Expressionist Oskar Kokoschka and his stuffed girlfriend is just one of the stories explored by our second-year Fashion History and Theory students, in response to the Fitzwilliam Museum’s forthcoming exhibition.

Jane Munro, curator of Silent Partners: Artist and Mannequin from Function to Fetish, asked our students to respond to the exhibition, which explores the evolution of the artist’s mannequin. Through short videos, they looked at the transformation of the mannequin from inconspicuous studio tool to fetishised object.

Student Angelina Todd focused on the shocking story of Viennese artist Oskar Kokoschka. Kokoschka was devastated when his lover Alma Mahler aborted their baby, and he enlisted with the Austrian army to fight in World War One. When he returned home severely wounded, he found Mahler had married a former fling – Bauhaus school founder, Walter Gropius.

A waltz with a polar bear
In an unconventional attempt to rid himself of his passion for Mahler, Kokoschka ordered dollmaker Hermine Moos to make an exact, life-size replica of his ex-girlfriend. He wrote: “Yesterday I sent a life-size drawing of my beloved and I ask you to copy this most carefully [...] Pay special attention to the dimensions of the head and neck, to the ribcage, the rump and the limbs.”

Träumende by Umbo © Phyllis Umbehr / Galerie Kicken Berlin / DACS 2014

Träumende by Umbo © Phyllis Umbehr / Galerie Kicken Berlin / DACS 2014

It took Moos six months to fulfil this order. While waiting, Kokoschka took up with his serving maid, who carved his initials into her breast as a sign of commitment. When the mannequin finally arrived, Kokoschka was horrified to find that, far from life-like, it had furry limbs.

He wrote to Moos in disgust, saying: “The outer shell is a polar-bear pelt, suitable for a shaggy imitation bedside rug rather than the soft and pliable skin of a woman […] Even attempting to pull on one stocking would be like asking a French dancing-master to waltz with a polar bear.”

Beheaded in the garden
Kokoschka came to terms with the mannequin’s hirsute appearance, painting and sketching the doll as he once drawn Mahler. Rumours emerged about his trips to the opera with the mannequin, their long carriage rides together and their private rendezvous.

Eventually, Kokoschka was convinced that his custom-made muse had cured him of his passion for Mahler. He threw a big champagne party with chamber music, destined to be the mannequin’s last. Kokoschka wrote: “When dawn broke – I was quite drunk, as was everyone else – I beheaded it out in the garden and broke a bottle of red wine over its head.”

Other subjects explored by our students include France’s consumer revolution and the story of mannequin maker Pierre Imans. The exhibition, which features life-size mannequins, dolls and over 180 remarkable artworks from across the world, runs at the Fitzwilliam Museum from 14 October 2014 until 25 January 2015.

More information:
BA Fashion Communication: Fashion History and Theory
The Fitzwilliam Museum’s Silent Partners exhibition

The post Drunken Painter Decapitates Mannequin Lover at Champagne Party appeared first on Central Saint Martins: News.

Gyo Yuni Kimchoe Scoops Fashion Scout’s Merit Award

© Gyo Kim

© Gyo Kim

Gyo Kim, who has is half of the award-winning Gyo Yuni Kimchoe label, has just graduated from the womenswear pathway of BA Fashion. His partner Yuni Choe makes up the other half of the label.

Having been named Fashion Scout’s Merit Award winner for the spring/summer 2015 season, Gyo Yuni Kimchoe will showcase their work at London Fashion Week in September. Their on-schedule catwalk show will be fully sponsored.

Speaking to Vogue, the duo said: “We are so honoured to be selected as the winner. The Merit Award is the best opportunity for new designers to show their vision and creativity.”

© Gyo Kim © Gyo Kim © Gyo Kim © Gyo Kim

‘An exciting approach’

Originally from Korean, Gyo Kim and Yuni Choe first met in New York. They then moved to London in 2011 to continue their studies. The couple’s concern about environmental problems, social issues and animal cruelty has led them to follow a philosophy of respecting life and nature.

Phoebe English, who was on this year’s judging panel, noted their work to be “very original with an exciting approach, you can tell they really enjoyed making their collection.”

Gyo Yuni Kimchoe’s eco-friendly, quirky and unexpected designs can be seen on schedule at the Freemason’s Hall in Covent Garden in September.

© Gyo Kim © Gyo Kim © Gyo Kim © Gyo Kim
More information:
BA Fashion
Gyo Yuni Kimchoe
Fashion Scout

The post Gyo Yuni Kimchoe Scoops Fashion Scout’s Merit Award appeared first on Central Saint Martins: News.

Nathan Shedroff Gives Five Tips For Design-Oriented MBA Students

Photo Credit: Nathan Shedroff

Photo Credit: Nathan Shedroff

In our second guest-post by Nathan Shedroff, the program chair of the Masters in Business Administration (MBA) in Design Strategy at the California College of the Arts, Nathan fuels from the success of his course to share helpful insights. Here, he gives five tips for design-oriented MBA students.

1) Numbers aren’t that scary. What likely scares design students is the experience of dealing with quantitatively-focused people who think that the numbers ARE the story (and all of it) instead of just a part of the story that needs to be told. Numbers should never make the decision (and this includes “big data”) but they should inform decisions and designers can’t be afraid of what numbers say.

2) Designers go into design fields because they’re comfortable with the qualitative in life. Traditional business people (and most business students) go into business because of the opposite—they trust numbers and “recipes” and feel lost without them. That sets-up a natural dichotomy (or even conflict). But both are necessary for informed strategy and decisions, as well as execution. Designers can help their peers better understand the power and qualitative value (which FAR outweighs quantitative value and is actually what most business people are after—they just don’t realize it or know how to phrase it). And, since most of our business peers aren’t willing to learn our language or processes, it’s up to us to learn theirs and be the translators.
3) Designers weile an incredible amount of influence (which is, ultimately, where leadership lives) because they can communicate visually. I’ve seen designers excel repeatedly within teams of mixed skills and experience because they can sketch something others are trying to articulate. In addition, our presentations are often more clear and attractive and strategy is about storytelling, after all.
4) Many qual people enter traditional business programs thinking that business has to be dry and serious to be legitimate. It doesn’t. Most “natural” business leaders and entrepreneurs know that people and ambiguity are opportunities to play, explore, and find new opportunities that others don’t see. The three tips above should explain why. A traditional degree doesn’t confer legitimacy or quality in and of itself—even at a hallowed institution. Some of the most respected programs in the world are ridiculously behind when it comes to teaching contemporary leadership, collaboration skills, design thinking, systems thinking, or project-based learning (instead of reading and regurgitating past cases). Students should look for programs that feel innovative in curriculum, teaching methods, and environment if they hope to be equipped for success tomorrow. The past isn’t an armory for the future.
5) By all means, don’t go join a business program right out of an undergraduate degree. This isn’t like an engineering, medicine, or law degree. As much as you’re rushing to become the business leader or designer you want to be, business programs require some experience to work from. Five—or even three—years of work experience gives students materials and lessons on which to draw and learn. We’ve had students ranging in age from 23 to 60 in the DMBA programs and I’ve seen the same lesson played-out in other MBA programs, as well: students simply learn more and “get more for their money” the more experience they have before they enter an MBA program.
- Nathan Shedroff, Program Chair, MBA in Design Strategy, California College of the Arts
As always, we welcome your thoughts via our survey at the bottom of the CSM MBA course page.

 

The post Nathan Shedroff Gives Five Tips For Design-Oriented MBA Students appeared first on Central Saint Martins: News.

Central Saint Martins Celebrates Sculptural History

Image from the Frank Martin exhibition.New window displays celebrate the contribution of Frank Martin and Anthony Caro to our sculpture department in the 1950s, 60s and 70s.

Frank Martin was Head of Sculpture at St Martin’s School of Art from 1952 to 1979. Under his leadership, the department became a centre for sculptural innovation.

Prominent figures such as Anthony Caro, Tim Scott, Phillip King, William Tucker, Michael Bolus, David Annesley and Isaac Witkin worked alongside him as teaching staff or practitioners.

Known as the New Generation sculptors, these artists took part in the seminal 1965 ‘New Generation’ exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery.

Image from the Frank Martin exhibition Image from the Frank Martin exhibition Image from the Frank Martin exhibition Image from the Frank Martin exhibition

A window on the past

A Frank Martin window display, featuring archive photographs of him and his students, is on show at Central Saint Martins until 29 August. An exhibition about Anthony Caro will run 3-17 October 2014 in window gallery B.

These displays draw on the huge number of photographs and course documents held by the Tate Archive and our Museum and Study Collection.

The two institutions are currently applying for the funding to fully catalogue the Frank Martin Archive and turn the collection into an accessible, vital resource.

More information:
Museum and Study Collection
Tate Archive

All images are courtesy of Tate Archive and our Museum and Study Collection.

The post Central Saint Martins Celebrates Sculptural History appeared first on Central Saint Martins: News.

Central Saint Martins Proposed Design MBA Shares Research

Business, Sustainability and Design Frameworks–insights into a DMBA.  Photo Credit - Nathan Shedroff

Business, Sustainability and Design Frameworks–insights into a DMBA.
Photo Credit – Nathan Shedroff

The proposed Masters of Business Administration (MBA) course has, over the past year, amassed a huge amount of research regarding the potential of creating a Design MBA  at Central Saint Martins.

We’ll be sharing with you some of the quotes we’ve gathered along the way, demonstrating that the idea of launching a business degree at an art school is very on point with MBA students, alumni, and business leaders. One of the subjects we tackled is that of how MBA graduates, past and present, should deal with flexibility and uncertainty. Here are some of the answers we received–we welcome your thoughts, comments and input via our survey.

• “Creativity. For the first time, in IBM’s survey of CEOs in 2010, a large number of them, around 60%, said that creativity and innovation was something they needed. There’s a huge knowledge base about design that has been absent from management education.” Management School Senior Academic, US

• “John Maeda says something like, ‘Artists ask question, technology creates possibilities, design creates solutions and leadership creates action’. That’s a summary of what an entrepreneur needs to cover.” MBA Alumnus

• “People need different ways of thinking in order to respond to the challenges of a no growth, no carbon society, dominated by non inclusive politics. I’m interested in design as a way of doing that, because designers use their brains laterally, contingently, accepting there is no one truth, accepting iterating as a methodology to move towards alternatives.” CSM Faculty Member

• “A focus on people’s experiences. I’ve realised from being in the entrepreneurial community in the Bay Area that user-centredness is so lacking in all aspects of business.” MBA Design Strategy Alumnus, US

• “Building organisation capable of innovating. The was for talent is expected to heat up for positions requiring high levels and more education.” GMAC 2013

• “Effective multi disciplinary building and working. Firms like GE, IBM and Philips are all struggling with talent and skills. The opportunity is to blend designers who are up-skilling to be equal and effective partners with marketing, engineering and new product development, and business and management people who want to access design innovation and creativity.” MBA Faculty Member, US

• “Design as a core managerial capability. Everything about a business has been designed: from how you answer the phone, to HR policy, to what the products and services are, to deciding what strategy to employ. And how they design is to look around, and find someone to rip off, which they call ‘best practice’. But that’s only relevant if what they do is sufficiently close to your situation to be applicable. If companies survive, it’s because they are unique. More and more, finding existing designs out there is not enough. You need to be capable of doing the activity. This is something that resonates with executives I talk to.” Management School Senior Academic, US

If you agree, or disagree, with any of these statements, you can have your input by filling out our survey–a very important step in the exciting development of this program.

More information:
CSM MBA
Stanford d.school
Innovation Management
Makerversity
ImpactHub
THNK School of Creative Leadership
KaosPilots

The post Central Saint Martins Proposed Design MBA Shares Research appeared first on Central Saint Martins: News.