Welcome to the Falmouth School of Art Blog

Thank you for visiting the Falmouth School of Art blog. Here is where we share news from across the School’s courses – the activities of our students, staff and alumni. Please click on the right to follow the blog and receive an update each time we post a new story. If you are a student or alumni and want us to share your news, we’d love to hear from you.


BA(Hons) Fine Art Second Year Exhibition

The Poly, Falmouth, is host again this year to the second year exhibition by BA(Hons) Fine Art students. The student curatorial committee worked with Falmouth alumni Cat Bagg and Rosie Thomson-Glover of Field Notes, to set up the show and make any necessary changes to the curation.

The student curatorial committee share their experience of putting up the first half of the show, as they prepare for the launch of the second half this evening:

‘Students found the Poly enormously supportive in allowing us to use space and their equipment; for example, allowing one of our artists to use the grand piano in the upper space, and giving us a library room we hadn’t seen before, adding a wonderful new dimension for us to work with in order to take advantage of the space’s antiquated atmosphere and natural light.

Transporting work from the university in the pouring rain didn’t particularly hinder the set-up, and by lunch time the following day the show was basically completed and preparations for the Private view began. By 5:30 we’d already had 100 people through the door, and there was a real buzz to the evening, with an estimated 250-300 who came along. The wine and nibbles were gone very quickly, but the Poly allowed us to work alongside them and use their bar to serve extra drinks.

We’re now preparing to do it all again for the second show, which will contain more work with sculpture and audio-visual content, so we’re excited to see how we can shape the show differently in order to accommodate this’.


The second half of the exhibition is open to the public 10-5 on Wednesday 14 and Thursday 15 March, and 10-1pm on Friday 16th, at The Poly, Church Street, Falmouth.

#IWD2018 – Thank you to these inspirational artists

On International Women’s Day 2018, a big thank you to these artists who have inspired our students by visiting us in Falmouth to talk about their practice as part of the Falmouth School of Art Guest Speaker Programme.

White out!

Snow has brought much to a standstill here in Falmouth…Our campuses are currently closed, no teaching is taking place today. Snow on this scale is very unusual for Cornwall, so a bit of an event. With routes leading to our campuses treacherous with ice and compacted snow and buses stopping service due to road conditions, our staff and student safety means business as usual isn’t possible today. However…snow shots from yesterday!…

Photo by Sami Saunders (pictured, from BA Drawing, l-r, Abigail Saunders, William Trewartha-Jones, Charlotte Jones, Meg Fatharly, Bryony Kemp and Constança Sardinha)



Shelterbox exhibition by BA(Hons) Drawing Students

BA(Hons) Drawing students from all years are exhibiting work during February and March in the Shelterbox Visitor Centre, Truro.

Course Coordinator & Senior lecturer Isolde Pullum says, ‘The students were very moved by their recent visit to Shelterbox. I think it really hit home to many of them the importance of an immediate response to an emergency situation. The idea to make drawings that could raise money came from them, and the theme of Temporary Housing seemed broad enough to encompass a range of different approaches and ideas.’

‘Also in the exhibition are The History Box drawings, which aim to capture the passage of time by including elements of change and movement within the same drawing. A drawing, unlike a photograph, has the potential to encompass time passing by the artist’s reaction to changes. The staff and students really welcome this opportunity to work with Shelterbox and hope it can be the start an ongoing relationship.’


All the drawings on display can be bought, some for as little as £10 each, with all the proceeds going to ShelterBox.  Visitor Experience Assistant Ellie Howell-Round says, ‘This is very generous of the Drawing students, and the artworks are fascinating and thought-provoking. Everyone can empathise with the people that ShelterBox helps, as we all fear extreme weather and appreciate the importance of safety and shelter.’

Honorary Fellow Mark Dion – Theatre of the Natural World

Artist Mark Dion, Honorary Fellow of Falmouth University, has a new show opening this week at Whitechapel Gallery, London. From the Whitechapel’s website:

Explorer, collector, activist and conjuror of theatrical environments American artist Mark Dion (b.1961) has travelled through rainforests and rubbish dumps to reveal the wonder and fragility of life on earth. Dion uses specimens – natural and manmade – to make uncanny representations of these environments. His drawings, sculptures and installations draw on the techniques of scientific enquiry and museum display; and on the telling of natural histories.

Mark Dion, The Wonder Workshop, 2015 (detail), dark oak cabinets, epoxy resin, paint, 124 magic sculpt objects, installation view of Future Histories: Mark Dion and Arseny Zhilyaev at Casa dei Trei Oci, Venice, 2015. Courtesy V-A-C Foundation, Moscow

We embark on a journey through a sequence of installations created between 2000 and the present. The exhibition begins with The Library for the Birds of London (2018), a new commission continuing a series of aviaries Dion has created since 1993. The roomy sanctuary is a temporary home to 22 zebra finches, which are well-known for being social creatures. Visitors are invited into the aviary, which has an apple tree at its centre, referencing the tree of life. Over 600 books devoted to ornithology, environmentalism, literature and the natural sciences surround the birds. A scholar’s study invites us to unravel intricate drawings and models; while the Bureau for the Centre of the Study for Surrealism and its Legacy displays the strange magic of obsolete things. The muddy banks of the Thames have also yielded their treasures for poetic display in a gigantic cabinet; while The Wonder Workshop displays the ghosts of animals and instruments, many of them extinct and obsolescent. Each immersive environment is also a habitat, evoking the characters that observe, conserve or exploit the natural world.

Theatre of the Natural World opens on 14 February, until 13 May 2018.

The Thrown Gauntlet Festival, Falmouth – this weekend!

Falmouth School of Art is very pleased to be contributing to the funding of The Thrown Gauntlet Festival of mixed arts which takes place in Falmouth this weekend from the 26 – 28 January 2018.  Produced and directed by a team of over 30, most of whom are students at Falmouth University, the second year of the festival promises to be even bigger than 2017.  The festival will include work from over 30 visual artists and will host 35 performances over the weekend including past and present Falmouth University students, local Falmouth artists, as well as work from the wider Cornish art community.

Amos Jacob, Festival Director, tells us more, “It is a festival that constitutes a celebration and a challenge.  A celebration of artistic creativity and a challenge to how we use our public and private spaces.  Our vision is to bring exceptional artistry into places where artistic expression is not usually experienced.  We passionately celebrate artistic merit in a multi-disciplinary environment and we take pride in exploring the social context of art.”

Work shown will include a mixture of painting, photography, installation and film, with performances across the mediums of dance, performance art, theatre, poetry and music.  The works selected were submitted to an open application process and were curated to represent artistic expressions from a diverse range of individuals and groups.

The exhibition venues are the artists’ homes, and homes that have been volunteered, as well as public parks and local pubs.  Amos continues, “this domestic setting challenges notions of public and private in the aim of provoking thought and discourse into the role of expression in civility”.  The festival hopes to engage people in their community, and hopes that the presence of the unusual festival will encourage conversations among the residents in Falmouth and the surrounding county.

The festival is based on a number of streets around the Smithick area of Falmouth, but all attendees will be required to first go to the festival hub located at The Jacobs Ladder Inn, 1-2 Chapel Terrace, Falmouth TR11 3BQ where you will receive your wristband, timetable and map.

For further information, please visit the festival website or Facebook page.

Last chance to see…at Imagine Falmouth

Beth Garnett, alumna of MA Illustration: Authorial Practice, is currently showing a collage – From the Headland at Mawnan I – as part of Falmouth Art Gallery’s Imagine Falmouth exhibition until this Saturday. The piece was produced during Beth’s participation in Falmouth School of Art’s Observational Drawing Intensive last July.

Beth Garnett, From The Headland At Mawnan I, 2017, Collage

After the success of Falmouth Art Gallery’s inaugural submissions show last year, ‘Imagine Falmouth’ has grown in scale, and is now a bi-annual exhibition and arts prize. The gallery invite emerging and established artists from across the county to submit their work. With no theme and no restriction on medium, the exhibition has reflected the very best of Cornish art today. The exhibition, which opened in November, closes on Saturday 20 January.

Falmouth School of Art Intensives offer a selection of 5-day courses for artists and art educators, all taking place in the studios and grounds of Falmouth Campus, and the surrounding area. Of her experience at last summer’s Intensive, Beth says, ‘The course was a really great timeout from real life to get back to drawing again, in beautiful surroundings. The tutors were supportive and offered really practical advice. The group size wasn’t too big and we had a lot of fun. I was able to find new directions for my work and new ideas for my process which has really refreshed my practice. I’m am sure will continue to impact on my drawing work for a long time to come’.

for 2018, Falmouth School of Art will run three Intensives; in Drawing, Abstract Painting and The Figure. Course descriptors will soon be available online, at www.falmouth.ac.uk/fsaintensives, where you can also find images from previous intensives, terms and conditions and a short application form.