Archives and Collections: Third Year Design History and Theory: Re-imagining Objects

Read about GSA Archives and Collections work with third year students as part of their Design History and Theory course!

By third year, most GSA students are beginning to think about their self-initiated research project which will go towards the completion of their undergraduate degree. At this point, students are encouraged to consider a wide range of materials to support their research and studio practice. Archives and Collections workshops use practical exercises, object handling and discussion to explore how archives and museum objects can be used for research. Students learn about the practicalities of how to find and access archives, and how to identify, interpret and respond to this material.

This workshop for Design History and Theory students began with an ice breaker exercise where students introduced an object they had brought in and explained why they had chosen it and what it tells others about them as an individual. The exercise encouraged the students to think about why we may choose to give significance to particular objects. Following this was a discussion about the role of archives and museums and why these institutions collect certain items and not others. The session then moved on to introduce examples of creative work informed and inspired by archives, before culminating in an exercise where the students engaged with a series of objects and used drawing and collage to re-imagine these as something different.

Some of the student’s finished creative responses

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