Between 8 and 12 February, staff and students were invited to take part in a series of activities engaging with green thinking and sustainability issues. Among the events were film screenings, debates, a vegan picnic and an exhibition showcasing CSMFoundation Performance Design and Practice student Yifei Chen’s work.
The Shakespeare is Dead/1616 exhibition showcased huge 3D masks, created by Yifei Chen, representing characters from Shakespeare’s The Tempest. The masks were worn during the Foundation Performance Design and Practice students Shakespeare is Dead/1616 performance, in which the classic was transformed into a modern version inspired by comic strips. The masks were created entirely from recycled materials sourced from the Central Saint Martins loading bay and the PDP department.
Speaking about the inspirations behind her designs, Yifei explained:
‘The idea came from Ai Weiwei’s coloured vases. He painted the Han Dynasty pots with bright colours, which was a big transformation. At the beginning of this project, I wondered how to give the characters a new look on the stage. I went to some museums and galleries for inspiration, and I was very interested in the Japanese Nō’s masks in the Victoria & Albert museum. The Nō is a 14th century dance-drama performed on a sparsely decorated stage with finely carved masks. The masks shown in the museum are very lively with concise and agile outline.’