Other Worlds

Open the doors to ‘Other Worlds’ and explore beyond the status quo with The Cass MA Show 2017.
Date: 25 August 2017

From 8 September to 16 September, The Cass will showcase the work of its postgraduate students in ‘Other Worlds’, an exhibition exploring differing artistic responses to an uncertain, and somewhat tumultuous, world. 

‘Other Worlds’ showcases and celebrates the breadth of work produced by students from a range of courses at the Cass, including MA Fine Art, MA Photography, MA by Project and PhD research students. 

Highlighting the diverse range of approaches to art seen within the school, the exhibition includes images which reimagine the universe through everyday objects, paintings based on Middle Eastern beliefs in supernatural worlds and ethnographic research exploring the anthropomorphisation of companion dogs. 

Amongst the work on show, visitors will experience new worlds and alternative realities through the work of MA Photography student, Becky Probert. Using commonplace objects, such as glass, Becky’s images hint at what lies beyond our perception, using the camera lens to reveal a universe that can not be perceived by our senses alone.  

Becky said: “I use my camera to find new worlds within the ordinary, to find strange dimensions within common forms, things that cannot be perceived in the same manner with just our natural senses. The content of my images exists in the real world, it has not been created, merely ‘captured’. By exploring the details of these commonplace objects, the camera unlocks elements and transforms them into something that cannot be seen without the lens as intermediary. 

“I am re-imagining the universe, and our place within it, hinting at what lies beyond our normal perceptions. The smallest details within a piece of glass can open up a doorway through which you can conceive the vastness of entire galaxies.”

The common superstitious beliefs found in modern society are addressed in a series of paintings by MA Fine Art student Marina Milani. Focusing on the enticement of superstition, particularly during times of agitation, Marina’s work combines traditional Iranian painting techniques with texture and dynamic brushstrokes found in western abstract art. 

PhD student Spencer Rowell’s Pathography series combines photographic self-portraits with text, creating a narrative which explores new inner and outer dialogues. To develop this, Spencer asked psychotherapists to give written responses to his images and used their language to develop his own accompanying text, creating a more rounded self-portrait. 

Spencer said: “The self-portrait I have made during this project is not beautiful, it is not unbeautiful; it is complicated, in its harshness and distress, even broken apart, but it is more representative of how I feel I am.” 

 “The Aldgate Bauhaus is morphing into the Castle Street Uffizi.” Patrick Brill aka Bob and Roberta Smith, Associate Professor of Fine Art at The Cass. 

The MA exhibition this year will be the first to take place in the Cass’s beautiful, newly refurbished art block located in The Annex, Old Castle Street E1. This move coincides with the exciting announcement of the launch of Fotografiska’s new Museum of Photography, due to open at the end of 2018, which being close to the Whitechapel Gallery and opposite the end of Old Castle Street, underscores The Cass as a key location in which to study the arts. 

‘Other Worlds’ runs from Friday 8 September until Saturday 16 September at The Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design, Calcutta House, Old Castle Street, London E1 7NT. The exhibition is open weekdays 11am to 7pm and weekends 11am to 5pm. There will be a private view on Thursday 7 September at 6pm.

Students exhibiting in ‘Other Worlds’ include:

MA Fine Art

  • Ali Bahreini
  • Jordanna Greaves
  • Marina Milani
  • Elina Sturno
  • Firouz Najmi-Tabrizi

MA Photography

  • David Periera
  • Becky Probert

MA by Project

  • Siobhan Culhane
  • Na’ama Haneman
  • Gareth Jones
  • Nora Loh
  • Vlad Mititelu
  • Sophie Mildred O’Neill
  • Simal Yesiltepe

PhD

  • Spencer Rowell
  • Marie Brenneis
  • Mary-Jane Opie

Image: Unknown Woman by Sophie O'Neill