Andrew Connor, a Teaching Fellow in Design and Digital Media (DDM), ran a 3-day series of lectures and workshops with students at the College of Art, New Delhi, India, from 26th-28th July 2017.

Inspired by the current joint Year of Culture between the UK and India, Andrew supervised a project called 'Interlinking Cultures' earlier this year at Edinburgh College of Art (ECA).

A team of DDM students collaborated to fuse Celtic and Indian art into a typeface, 3D models, and an audiovisual installation.

The project received additional support through guidance from Ishan Khosla, an award-winning graphic designer based in New Delhi.

As part of his visit to New Delhi, Andrew took the installation created by his students here in Edinburgh, and used it as inspiration for students on the MFA Applied Arts programme to create their own designs, fusing UK and Indian culture.

The resulting designs were exhibited at the end of the workshops, sparking a discussion and critique session with the students about how to develop their own research and embed deeper meaning and significance into their creative endeavours.

"International collaborations of this kind allow the students to experience different approaches to their subject, to broaden their experience and develop their own links with fellow creative practitioners across the world."

Andrew Connor, Teaching Fellow in Design and Digital Media

The workshops and discussions were met with a great response from the students.

Andrew said: “The students in New Delhi were very keen and engaged, and I thoroughly enjoyed working with them. They brought a great deal of skill and thought to the work that they produced, and took part fully in our discussions and critique sessions. I particularly enjoyed a debate we had about the difference between art and design.

"Our approach for the Design and Digital Media MSc programme is to encourage students to explore the meaning and principles behind their work, and it was a pleasure to see the Delhi students respond so well in the conversations we had. I would definitely welcome any of the students to follow up on this experience, and to come over to Edinburgh to explore what we have to offer here."

Critique sessions and discussion
Image courtesy of Meher Kamath
Critique sessions and discussion followed the workshops
Blue bird graphic design
Image courtesy of Meher Kamath
Graphic design from the workshops

Andrew commented on the impact of having students collaborate across borders:

“International collaborations of this kind allow the students to experience different approaches to their subject. I would hope they'll also be encouraged to apply for international trips such as this themselves, to broaden their experience and develop their own links with fellow creative practitioners across the world.”

Andrew described how opportunities like this, made possible through the Erasmus+ programme, have benefits for both the students and the teachers.

“I'm very proud of the great reputation that the University of Edinburgh has across the world, and especially with our extensive engagement with the Erasmus+ programme. It's a great opportunity to deliver teaching workshops in other countries, learning from the staff and students there about their teaching methods, and setting up the potential for future creative collaborations.”

The visit was made possible with the support of the ERASMUS+ programme, and received interest in the Indian press, supported by the University's International Office for South Asia.


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