AUB students and staff contribute to the Modernism on Sea Festival. The festival celebrated Art and Culture of the 1930’s and took place at Talbot Heath School to mark their 130-year anniversary.

Among the many 1930’s inspired events that took place, BA (Hons) Costume and Performance Design ran a workshop in Millinery and Modernism,  BA (Hons) Graphic Design ran a Type Print workshop while course leader, Simon Beeson from BA (Hons) Architecture gave an inspirational lecture.

AUB were delighted to be involved in the festival. Wayne Martin and Rebecca Pride led a workshop on modernist millinery. A series of pre-blocked felt hats were decorated by participants, who used a series of paintings by Georges Braque to inspire their designs. Cut felt work, Petersham ribbon and a sculptural millinery product called ‘Crin’ was used to create some very interesting hats. Cubist violins, flowers and ribbon shapes embellished the monochrome cloche hats, pill box and fascinator designs.

Rebecca commented: ‘It was wonderful to see the creative designs that were the result of the workshop. Participants aged from five to seventy, worked to make their individual bespoke creations. It was a lovely way to spend an afternoon in such an inspiring environment at Talbot Heath, the ultimate modernist deco building’.

BA (Hons) Graphic Design students along with Printmaker, Preeti Sood ran a Type Print workshop. Second year students, Ben Gale, Stefan Man, Amber Ruske, Abi Grove and Katy Barnett explored various print processes celebrating the typeface Gill Sans and helped visitors create unique and colourful prints.

Ben tells us: “It has been a great opportunity to explore traditional print processes but using digital technology in creating the characters themselves.”

Stefan adds: “The process of the pixel-perfect digital form, which is subsequently hand-printed creates a unique and individual outcome which has a particular warmth to the quality of the print.”

The sans-serif typeface was created by Eric Gill in 1926 and released by Monoprint in 1928. Gill Sans is often referred to as the ‘Helvetica of England’ and its use is far reaching to the present day. Many examples of Eric Gill’s work can be found throughout Talbot Heath School.

Visitors to The Modernism on Sea Festival also had the opportunity to hear from numerous speakers such as James Russell, an art expert specialising in Ravilious/Bawden/Nash and Suzanne Johnson, Novelist of The Photographer’s Wife.

Stefan Man and Ben Gale have also created a short animation to promote the festival on social media.

Angharad Holloway, the Headmistress of Talbot Heath School said, It was the sheer hard work, determination and enthusiasm of a small band of kindred spirits committed to the Arts that enabled it (Modernism on Sea Festival) to happenThose who came loved it!”