“The course provides opportunities to develop a range of practical skills, but even more significantly, I think, it encourages you to consider the broader context of your work.”
Please tell us a bit about your work and your influences
My work is informed by research into the Rampion offshore wind farm and the proposed Rampion II expansion. Visible from Brighton seafront, Rampion is the south coast’s first offshore wind farm, and if approved by planners, Rampion II will increase its capacity by up to 1200MW—enough to supply over a million homes. Through photography, digital modelling, and sand-cast ceramics, I explore new ways of interpreting this soon-to-be infrastructure. While recognising the wind farm as a sign of progress on the path towards net zero, I am interested in how this meaning changes in the context of runaway climate change—what missed opportunities and failed utopias might the turbine come to represent? My outlook was shaped by a series of walks, during which I attempted to follow the route of the proposed onshore cable connecting Rampion II to the grid. My work responds to encounters with objects, half-forgotten yet enduring, in these peripheral landscapes.
How have you found your course and time at Brighton?
I have really enjoyed my three years studying 3D Design & Craft at Brighton. The workshops are an amazing resource, and the expertise of tutors and technicians is second to none! The course provides opportunities to develop a range of practical skills, but even more significantly, I think, it encourages you to consider the broader context of your work. This emphasis on critical reflection is what gives “traditional” crafts contemporary relevance, and it is a credit to the course.
How did you choose your course – why did you choose to study 3D?
I chose 3D Design & Craft because I wanted to try a few different things before specialising in any one craft/material area. Ironically, given how important digital processes are to my practice now, I was drawn to the idea of the analogue—working with my hands in a time-honoured tradition of craftspeople. How I identify as a maker has changed significantly since then, but scope for this kind of self-discovery was part of the course’s appeal all along.
What are your plans after graduation?
I am planning to move to London this summer, where I hope to find a job in an interdisciplinary art or design studio. Alongside this, I will continue to develop my own practice, with a focus on speculative fictions and the built environment.
Instagram is @shaunyatesdesign