Media Culture and Practice

Sideways Looks website

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All the current third year's final projects in web, video and photo media can be accessed here:

Media students in the Creative Industries degree show

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After the success of the Sideways Looks exhibition and screening, a selection of the best Media work will be included in the Dept of Creative Arts degree show on our Bower Ashton campus. The show opens on the 9th June, for full details please follow this link.

The Sideways Looks manifesto

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It has never been more important to study the media. As Lord Leveson lifts the Fleet Street flagstones to glimpse the tangle of power, influence, secrecy, disdain and corruption writhing beneath them, as social media are accused of rewiring children’s brains, of destroying the very sociality they proclaim but also celebrated for toppling autocratic regimes, as popular magazines proliferate new forms of disgust for their readers’ bodies, and as photography, video, animation and the written word fuse, split and evolve in the new primal soup of the Web, the work on display in this exhibition offers a magnifying glass for the study of this rapidly mutating media ecosystem.
These student-producers are not replicating established media conventions and images, they are dismantling and remaking them through a critical engagement with media and cultural theory, and through a creative ambition for the technical, aesthetic and political possibilities of digital technologies and networks. They have an eye on the future, but - just as importantly - a critical and sideways eye on the everyday and here-and-now in all its banal strangeness.
This exhibition and screening (and the Media & Cultural Studies course from which it has emerged) follows the call to arms raised by the notorious media theorist Marshall McLuhan, in whose centenary year these students began these projects:
‘instead of scurrying into a corner and wailing about what the media are doing to us, we should charge straight ahead and kick them in the electrodes’.

Sideways Look video

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Sideways Looks pictures

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The show has been de-rigged and packed away... but there are dozens of photographs documenting the event. Click on the images below!

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setting up Sideways

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The level 3 student show Sideways Looks is now being hung at Paintworks event space, near to HTV and Endemol ( home of Deal or No Deal!). If you are joining the Media Culture & Practice degree in 2012, you might like to come and check it out. The opening is on Weds 16th May from 5.45 onwards and you are very welcome. The exhibition and screenings continue all through Thurs and Friday morning. See here for directions, and earlier posts to this blog for more details.


Sideways Looks: the details

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Invitation to Sideways Looks:

Sideways Looks Exhibition - Digital Media Projects 2012

Final year projects by Media and Cultural Studies and Film Studies Students from the University of the West of England

Paintworks Event Space, Paintworks, Bath Rd, Arno's Vale, Bristol BS4 3EH

16th May- Opening Night 5.45pm -10pm
17th May- 10am - 8pm
18th May- 10am - 1pm

Sideways Looks is the 2012 Media and Cultural Studies and Film studies graduate showcase. Students use photography, new media, and video to address contemporary cultural issues, creatively and critically exploiting the conventions of media and film to raise questions about individual identity and the urban, technological and media environment in the 21st century.

Paintworks is located on the A4 (Bath Road. It is approximately a 12 minute walk from the station.

Notes for editors:

Senior lecturer Rod Dickinson explains, “Students on the award are asked to produce work which shows that they understand the ways the media work, and also that they can analyse and critique this. Their projects represent a fresh look at the world while often unravelling some of the ways in which our views are currently shaped by existing media.”

Amongst those students showing their work is Nick Alden, whose projects Facegrab and Wikititles explore the inner working of web 2.0 technologies. Facegrab randomly generates names and then shows us live and apparently private data that is associated with that name and freely available on Facebook’s servers.

Identity is also explored in Jess Bartram’s fictional video intoVIEW, where the setting of an interview in a homeless shelter becomes a platform to build and undermine our expectations and assumptions about the main characters. As the video progresses the viewer becomes increasingly aware of the assumptions that they have made about each of the characters.

Jo Carnegie-Brown's large photo-montage work emphasises how technologies and media shape even our dreams, which are invaded by technological symbols and media imagery. 

Other work has a strong Bristol focus, with students exploring the contrasts of the city, from urban isolation to ethnic and social diversity. Among these students is Tasha Busta, whose portraits of women working in male dominated jobs include local bus drivers and women working at British aerospace.

Some of this work can be viewed on the exhibition website at

For information regarding our Media Culture and Practice degree visit-
For information regarding our Film Studies degree visit-

For further information please contact

Sideways Looks: media graduate show

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