Fine art students from West Suffolk College are exhibiting their work at Moyse’s Hall in Bury St Edmunds this week as part of the Museums at Night Festival.
The exhibition shows work from second year students which ranges from taxidermy to sculpture, needlework and screen printing as well as painting and photography.
The event on Friday, May 15, from 6.30pm to 8.30pm, is called ‘Museums at Night: The Future of History’. It is aimed at showing visitors the artists’ work as well as offering information to people who want to find out more about careers in archaeology and heritage.
Student Ellen Sutcliffe, 19, of Felsham, is displaying works of taxidermy in the event. She has learnt how to stuff and mount the animals and is using the final pieces as her exam work.
She said: “I became interested in taxidermy because my grandmother had a stuffed squirrel at her house and I was fascinated by it growing up. I have learnt how to do taxidermy through reading about it and going on day courses.
“I don’t do the taxidermy work at College for health and safety reasons. But I am submitting them for my exam and I love making the animals look beautiful.
“I have never harmed an animal for my taxidermy – I only use animals that I find or are given to me and that have died accidentally or of old age. I work in a pub and often farmers or game keepers will give me an animal and I just pop it in my freezer at home until I’m ready to start working on it. I hope after I leave college to become a full time taxidermist.”
Natasha Ling, 18, of Diss, made a screen print of cells she had examined through a microscope. She said: “I looked at the slides of these cells that I had borrowed from the College’s science department and I thought they were beautiful.”
Tom Cooper, 23, of Bury St Edmunds, has made a self-portrait in clay. He said: This is the first time I have done a sculpture like this and I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t tempted to make myself look better than I really look. To do it properly you have to get rid of any vanity. I’m also a tattoo artist and I hope to do more of that work after I leave college.”
Amy Taylor, 19, of Thetford, made an apron stitched with words women often hear. She said: “I wanted to say something about the typical put downs women get told all the time, so I asked lots of people for things that are said to them and I stitched them onto an apron.”