One hundred first-year students from the School of the Arts made history themselves on Thursday night (19 May 2016) at the launch of an exhibition showcasing their contemporary response to Bolton’s 1937 Mass Observation.


At the first major show of first year work in Bolton School of the Arts’ 150-year history, students from across all disciplines came together to create Worktown Revisited. The 1930s landmark social history project, which centred on Humphrey Spender’s photography, is showcased at Bolton Museum and the University of Bolton is home to the Centre for Worktown Studies.


Students from six art and design disciplines exhibited work at the show where prizes were awarded to best of show in each area.


Head of School, Sam Johnson, praised the ‘wonderful’ work produced by the students. ‘This is the School of the Arts’ inaugural major exhibition of first year work and the result is this fabulous display. The students have set an incredibly high standard for similar exhibitions in the future.’


Collections Access Officer (Art and Social History), Matthew Watson, of Bolton Museums and Art Gallery, selected best in show pieces with Jason Simpson of the arts collective, Neo:artists. The University of Bolton alumni-led collective are now in their eighth year, Neo:artists are based in studios in Bolton’s and have a gallery in the town’s Marketplace Shopping Centre. Prizes were awarded to:

Fine Art – Nadine Sawiki

Animation & Illustration – Poppy Willcock

Graphic Design – Ellen Chaffin

Textiles & Surface Design – Ursula Thomas

Interior Design – Faidon Gkaniatsas

Photography – Bethany Hignet


The Bolton School of the Arts show is on at Crompton Place Creative Hub and Exhibition Centre, Mealhouse Lane, Bolton, BL1 from May 20 until 16 June 2016. It is open Tuesday to Friday from 10am to 3pm. Entry is free. There’s a Facebook page, if you’d like to check out all the news and see how the show was put together.








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