‘Certain programmes require open studio space to support independent learning and enquiry. Students use these spaces flexibly; they store ideas and resources there, they use them for speculative enquiry, they rely on them for very flexible access and they learn to work with them to form a culture of individual responsibility relevant to their creative making. Even though a ‘body’ may not be there the room remains a resource that supports their learning. These are not spaces we can timetable and they are part of what students expect from their registration with the University.’ E-mail extract sent to the University Space Manager for Estates and Facilities.
We should and do defend the studio requirement, it is an essential condition that often takes form as a physical space. But are we defending it for the right reasons. Is it really where all contemporary practice must take shape or is this, in itself, a limiting pre-determinant that effectively mirrors the prejudices and privileges of a professionalised and conservative cultural sector?
– Extract from keynote presentation given by Professor Paul Haywood, Deputy Dean, Middlesex School of Art & Design, Middlesex University.