Mae Shummo graduated from our Fine Art BA (Hons) and is now studying our Public Art and Performance MA. Mae talks about continuing onto postgraduate study and how her art is developing as a result.
Hi Mae, thanks for taking the time to chat to us! Could you start off by letting us know why you picked London Met and particularly your course over other institutions and courses?
I studied my Fine Art BA (Hons) at London Met and I loved it. I had always thought that I wanted to apply for an MA that had a curatorial element and I was very pleased to know about the Public Art and Performance MA at London Met. I applied and was very pleased to have been accepted.
Did you feel supported by the lecturers on your course?
Definitely, I have found our course leader Dr Jacek Scarso to be one of the best lecturers and tutors I've ever had. He goes above and beyond, he's very patient, a brilliant creative thinker and ensured that we had a smooth running schedule despite the mayhem of the last year during the pandemic. There are many examples but I guess that we had some very interesting leaders in the field as visiting lecturers in various master classes. This is one of the many great aspects about this MA.
Public Art and Performance is a unique course, what attracted you to studying it?
I've never considered myself as belonging to just one discipline but rather was always looking for ways to explore the breadth of my creativity. I have so many interests and influences such as my interest in anthropology, public space, curation and monuments. That meant that this MA had so much to offer and I believe that I made the right choice.
Can you tell us a little more about your background as an artist?
I am a multidisciplinary artist. I like working with image and text but also work in installation and sculpture. I have worked in a broad creative spectrum and curated many events bridging the gap between creativity as an artist and creativity in other fields such as fashion, travel and tourism and event management.
How is this MA course helping you to develop as an artist?
It's expanding my field of interest and has exposed me to many different ideas, artists and a better understanding of contemporary art institutions as well as the current shifts in public art. It has also taught me more about my unique creative qualities and abilities.
Do you work on any personal projects alongside your studies or have you done any work experience while studying?
I have met some interesting people who I've found some shared interests with and will hopefully pursue those links in the future. It's mainly been about how stories are collected, told and represented in public places.
What has been your favourite project or piece of work you’ve worked on so far?
There's something about all the projects on this MA course that have added a new dimension to my understanding of the role of artist in the social sphere. But, my favourite is a collection of 11 short poems titled Anthologies. I wrote them as text for the public artwork "Veil", a project we did with Artichoke back in the winter of 2020. You can read more about it on my online portfolio.
Do you have a favourite place in London?
The River Thames and Greenwich.
Any tips for new students who might be thinking about studying Public Art and Performance at London Met?
I'd say be very open and try new things.
What are your plans once you’ve finished this course?
I'd like to work in curation whether independently or within an institution. I'd also like to try my hands at public art projects.
Thank you for the insight into your art and time on the course, Mae! Finally, is there anything else you’d like to tell us about your time at London Met that isn’t covered above?
It has been a very enlightening experience and I'm very glad that I followed my gut feeling and applied for this MA.