"I graduated with a BA in Fine Art from Newcastle University in 2005. My work at the time was predominantly sculptural – my methodology was reflexive and systematic, and to that extent codified and computational. Immediately after graduating I began working as a gallery technician at the Baltic Gallery in Gateshead. After six months the opportunity arose to work as an artist’s assistant to Damien Hirst at his painting studio in London. I spent two years there before beginning the MFA at Goldsmiths.
I decided to do an MFA to concentrate on developing my own practice more intensively. I didn’t want to do a generic Fine Art Master’s and so began to look for a course that was tailored to my specific interests. The structure of the MFA has provided me with the technical competence and critical knowledge to position my practice in relation to its art historical context. It has enabled me to develop a specific line of inquiry that I intend to continue researching.
During the first year I learnt technical computing skills to complement the practical making skills that I already possessed. From a practical level, I now know what is ‘possible’ with technology; I am able to develop my ideas in accordance with an intuitive understanding of what is possible, in a similar way to how I intuitively understand how to make something in 3-dimensions. I don’t possess the technical skills necessary to find employment outside of the course as a programmer – this isn’t why I did the course – but I understand the fundamentals of computer programming, and am confident that I would be able to collaborate effectively with programmers on more ambitious projects in the future.
In February 2010 the Department of Computing provided the funding for myself and another member of the course to exhibit our work on a stand at the Kinetica Art fair in Marylebone. The experience was brilliant – we received direct feedback about our work from a large proportion of the thousands of people who visited the fair over the four days. The feedback has enabled me to develop my work since – an opportunity that wouldn’t have been possible without the course and the College."