ULU Project

I thought I’d write an explanation of the project I completed last year for the University of London Union (ULU)

At the beginning of 2003 I started a project to make 50 drawings of students attending the University, my aim was to reflect the enormous diversity amongst the student population and I made the drawings in the form of a student I.D. card. Each drawing is the size of the ULU student card and the drawing was laminated with a reverse side as a facsimile of the I.D. card with the drawing reduced in size and used as the photo and the student’s name and college written in.

Some interest from the management of ULU led to a proposal to make three large scale works of art based on the 50 original drawings to be installed in the ULU building on Malet Street.

2 of the pieces were to be made of colour prints of digital paintings of the 50 drawings. Each of the drawings was scanned into a computer and I used digital painting software and a graphics tablet to “paint” each of the drawings, which then existed as digital files which needed printing to form the materials for the large scale pieces.

The third was a piece reproducing the drawings in a larger scale and then dividing those images into pieces the size of the original drawings and using the fragments to create a new image.

By the summer of 2005 everything was ready to go, the files were printed as Giclee prints and I had the composition of the “fragmented” third piece worked out and ready to assemble. The ULU building was undergoing a redevelopment and the bars were closed during this time providing an ideal workspace to assemble the three final pieces during a week towards the end of the summer.

The pieces were then framed and exhibited at an opening hosted by The Woburn Gallery before being installed at the ULU building at the beginning of the academic year 2005/6.

Take a look at the ULU project photo album on facebook for more images of the drawings, digital  paintings and finished works at exhibition and in location.

About Simon Tolhurst

Visual Artist
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6 Responses to ULU Project

  1. deardoctor says:

    You know I always thought I was not in the right place on the canvas. I should have been…EVERYWHERE!!!!!!

  2. simon says:

    Although that would have been only 1/50th of the effort that went into that project it might have been a bit scary for the viewer to see so many Donalds looking back at them :p
    Try mocking it up on photoshop instead for the "Donald by Andy Warhol" effect.

  3. deardoctor says:

    No the real reason is that if the canvas had 50x me on it the people wouldn’t be drinking in the Duck and Dive anymore, they’d all be standing on the steps admiring such beauty!

  4. Tristian says:

    Hey Simon, Just had a look through your work, great stuff, commented here as i remember when you were doing all these sketches when i was at ULU. brought back some good memories. just thought i share, hope you are well!

    • Hi Tristian, what a lovely comment, thank you! The portraits are still up in ulu and it’s fun when one of the ex students comes back to visit and finds that there’s a picture of them in the building 🙂 I’m well thanks and hope you are too and that life in Sydney is treating you well, thanks for sharing!

  5. Pingback: “The Reflecting Eye” Exhibition Closed, ULU Still Life and 2014′s First Drawings! | Simon Tolhurst

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