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Monday, June 19, 2006

Degree show

At the moment, I am busy organising my degree show which will start on Wednesday the 28th. In my pathway, Information design there are around 40 students, but by the time we found a committee to set up the show, only four people volunteered to do the job. And for months Jess, Fabian, Trond and me would meet up and have endless discussions about the degree show and how all our work could be laid out. Displaying the work on a dead pig or embedding everything in white shiny surfaces are just two of the concepts we put in our black box of ideas. We discussed many variations and considered a variety of media. I don't know how often we questioned our ideas, the purpose of a degree show and why we are doing all this; But Trond hit the mark when he wrote that "We have been appointed as a benevolent oligarchy to arrange all this by the lethargic masses." and we continued.

So what did we decide on, in the end? What final decision did we, "the commitee", make? ... We decided to film all the students work, set up projectors in the studio and only show the work digitally. Wham!
Now, I can understand that this sounds like a 42 to many students, but unlike in the hitchhiker's guide, people could have asked us how we came to this conclusion. We made a conscious decision to not show any work and we are sticking to it. What is happening now is that people started to complain. They don't agree, they weren't asked, they want the studio fee back, they had to come in and film their work! But the base of argumentation is very difficult, because they know that we can always argue that they didn't care in the beginning and that it's their own fault. And we know that they will criticise the exhibition and discuss the many ways in which the show could have been so much better. In the end both sides are true: Noone else wanted to do all the work and of course it could be so much better!

I am wondering if there is a Mother Teresa-ish way to solve this situation. Ideally both sides aim for the same result, which is to show off with their work in the degree show. Well, there is still one week to go and many hands are required to help finishing preparation for the show and although the concept of the exhibition won't change, there are still plenty of opportunities to work and make the exhibition a successful event.

So much for an ideal world. At the end of the day everybody has to justify his actions to himself. And I think I've done a very flattering job ;)


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